Finland to produce front fuselage for all F-35 users

Finland produce F35 front fuselage
USAF F-35A stealth fighter.

While news of Finland's purchase of the F-35 had been known for some time, details of the nation's industrial involvement in the program had not yet been disclosed. They emerged on Friday when Finnish Defense Minister Antti Kaikkonen signed an agreement on industrial participation. The agreement was concluded with the fighter manufacturer Lockheed Martin and Pratt & Whitney, the engine manufacturer and member of the Raytheon technologies group.

The industrial participation obligation is based on a decision taken by the Finnish Defense Minister in April 2018 in which participants of the HX Fighter Program were advised that the value of the industrial cooperation should have been at least 30 percent of the actual contract price. Finland's order for 64 F-35A jets, support and services is worth $9.4 billion.

With such industrial participation Finland aims to develop and maintain the production, technology and expertise in the defence and security industry that is critical with respect to national defence, state security and functions vital to society, as well as to improve and safeguard the national security of supply.

The industrial participation solution will enable the nation to develop credible expertise in the domestic industry from the security of supply perspective and will play an important role in the national economy. The most important industrial participation projects include large-scale production of the F-35 front fuselage in Finland also for other users, production of structural components as well as equipment testing and maintenance capability. Finland was also offered a project of the final assembly of engines for the Finnish Air Force aircraft.

Written by Matteo Sanzani

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