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Update: Kuwait orders Bayraktar TB2 UAVs

Kuwait has become the latest country to sign for the Turkish-built Bayraktar TB2 UAV, with a USD370 million deal announced on 18 January. (Baykar)

The Kuwaiti Ministry of Defense has placed a USD370 million order for Bayraktar TB2 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the Turkish company Baykar Technology announced on 18 January.

Acquired under a procurement project launched by Kuwait in July 2019, the deal will see the Gulf state acquire an undisclosed number of UAV systems. A recent deal for Romania, valued at USD300 million, comprised three systems made up of 18 air vehicles, plus support and training.

Baykar said its UAV had been selected over competitors from the US, Europe, and China in a contest that began in July 2019.

The announcement was accompanied by a photograph of Baykar Technology's CEO Haluk Bayraktar meeting Lieutenant General Khaled Saleh al-Sabah, the chief of staff of the Kuwaiti armed forces.

The Bayraktar TB2 is a medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) UAV, which was developed to provide the Turkish Armed Forces with a tactical intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance capability. According to Janes All the World's Aircraft: Unmanned, the Bayraktar TB2 is 6.5 m long and has a 12 m wingspan. With a maximum take-off weight of 630 kg, the air vehicle can carry up to 55 kg in mission system and/or weapons payload. Performance specifications give the Bayraktar TB2 a cruising speed of 70 kt, a range of 150 km, an endurance of 24 hours, and a service ceiling of about 30,000 ft.

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