BAE Systems secures Typhoon and Hawk sale to Oman
By Jon Lake
BAE Systems signed a long-awaited GBP2.5 billion (USD4 billion) aircraft contract with Oman on 21 December that will see the company supply the sultanate with 12 new-build Eurofighter Typhoon fighters and 8 Hawk trainer aircraft.
Specifically, the Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO) will receive nine single-seat and three twin-seat Typhoon Tranche 3 fighters and eight Hawk Mk 128 Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) aircraft, as well as a comprehensive in-service support package. The aircraft will enter build in 2014 for delivery in 2017.
The path to securing this deal has been long and protracted. In November 2008 the Financial Times reported that BAE Systems was in talks to sell up to 24 Typhoon aircraft to Oman in a deal worth at least GBP1.4 billion. This deal was to be concluded by 2012.
Omani interest also included the possibility of taking surplus early-model Typhoons from the UK Royal Air Force (RAF). However, the time span involved in the negotiations means this will not now happen. "[The Typhoons] are definitely additional to RAF commitments; there is no 'netting off' and no reductions in other orders," Chris Boardman, managing director of BAE Systems Military Air and Information, told IHS Jane's.197 of 536 words
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