Trump administration pushes Bulgaria to choose the F-16

Trump pushes Bulgaria choose F-16
Trump administration pushes Bulgaria to choose the F-16.

On January 8, 2019, the White House issued a press release to invite Sofia to choose the F-16 to replace the old fighter jets.

"We believe that the F-16 Block 70 offers Bulgaria the best possible combination of price, capability and interoperability with other NATO air forces. If the F-16 Block 70 is selected by Bulgaria, it will serve Bulgaria’s air force capably and reliably for decades to come.

The F-16 Block 70 also offers state-of-the-art technology. Its acquisition by Bulgaria would give the Bulgarian Air Force the ability to reliably defend Bulgaria’s airspace while operating jointly within NATO with all the other air forces that fly F-16s, including all of Bulgaria’s NATO neighbors. Acquisition of F-16 Block 70 aircraft would further strengthen long-term support and cooperation with the United States Air Force and other NATO air forces," document says.

The promotion of the Lockeed Martin's fighter by the White House follows the recent statements by the Bulgarian government on the nation's intention to continue the assessment of the new aircraft to replace the MiG-29 fleet. Bulgaria intends to buy eight new or second-hand fighter jets to replace its ageing Soviet-era aircraft, in a tender estimated at 1.8 billion levs (€ 900 million). The main contenders of the F-16 are the Saab Gripen and the Eurofighter Typhoon.

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Written by Matteo Sanzani
Image: Lockheed Martin

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