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Romania to buy surplus F-16s from Norway

Romania is to buy surplus Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon combat aircraft from Norway to add to the former Portuguese aircraft it currently fields.

Romanian Defence Minister Vasile Dîncu said on 10 December that Bucharest is looking to acquire 32 Royal Norwegian Air Force F-16s that are to be sold with the arrival of the Lockheed Martin F-35A Lighting II in that country.

The deal is expected to be valued at EUR454 million (USD513 million), and would see the F-16s service with the Romanian Air Force (Forțele Aeriene Romane: RoAF) for 10 years.

“There will also be a process of refurbishment and modernising of these jets as it is absolutely necessary to have planes and a much larger fleet that would be in line with the strategic position that Romania has in NATO,” Dîncu said.

The acquisition of Norwegian jets would supplement the existing Romanian fleet of 17 refurbished and modernised F-16AM/BMs acquired second-hand from Portugal between October 2016 and March 2021.

Despite being among the oldest F-16s in service, and being frequently flown in inclement weather conditions, the RoNAF Fighting Falcons are among the best maintained F-16s globally. US company Draken International on 22 November announced it has acquired 12 of the aircraft for its contractor-based ‘red air' training.

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