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Romania receives its first F-16 fighter aircraft

28 September 2016
The first six Lockheed Martin F-16 fighters for Romania were delivered on 28 September. Source: Romanian Ministry of National Defence

Romania's first six Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft were officially handed over on 28 September at Monte Real Air Force Base Nº5 in Portugal.

The former Portuguese Air Force aircraft are due to be flown to Romania on 29 September where they will be assigned to the 86th Air Base at Borcea, which is currently home to MiG- 21 LanceR aircraft.

Romania purchased 12 F-16s from Portugal for EUR181 million (USD203 million) in September 2013. These include nine F-16AM single-seaters and three F-16BM two-seaters, and were bought via C. N. Romtehnica under the Peace Carpathian programme, with third-party transfer authorisation coming from the US government.

Three more aircraft will be delivered by December, while the final three will be delivered in October 2017, the Portuguese Ministry of National Defence (MoND) told IHS Jane's .

The deal also included overhaul of engines; initial logistics support; training of up to nine pilots, 75 technicians, and four mission planers; two years of on-site support; and updating the fleet to operational flight program (OFP) development software M5.2R standard, with support from Lockheed Martin.

Romania also operates MiG- 21 LanceRs from its 71st Air Base in Campia Turzii. The country is hoping to procure another batch of F-16s from a NATO nation and have them upgraded to finally replace the LanceR.

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