Officials of the government of Chile signed a letter of offer and acceptance (LOA) yesterday for 10 F-16C/D aircraft, according to Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company, a business area of Lockheed Martin Corporation [NYSE: LMT].
"After a long and intense competition, we are very pleased and appreciative that the Chilean Air Force will become the 22nd member of the F-16 family," said Dain M. Hancock, president of Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company. "We look forward to beginning a long and mutually beneficial relationship with Chile's military forces and industry."
The LOA outlines a Foreign Military Sales agreement between the governments of Chile and the United States, with total value of about $500 million. A contract between the prime contractor Lockheed Martin and the U.S. Air Force is expected later this year and will be worth approximately $400 million.
The aircraft will be delivered between mid 2005 and mid 2006.
Henry Gomez, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics director for market development in the Americas region, characterized the F-16 as a high-technology fighter that will satisfy Chile's program needs. "The F-16 has proven itself, time and time again, to be a versatile, front-line fighter, which is constantly evolving its technical and operational capabilities," said Gomez. "For Chile, the F-16 met or exceeded all the technical and operational requirements of the Chilean Air Force. The Chilean Air Force will benefit from the associated training opportunities and interoperability with the U.S. Air Force. As a nation, Chile will also be able to benefit from the technology transfer by Lockheed Martin and the F-16 industrial team as a part of the associated industrial cooperation program."
The mix of aircraft will be six single-seat F-16Cs and four two-seat F-16Ds. The aircraft is the latest version of the Block 50 F-16 and is powered by the General Electric F110-GE-129 engine, which is being procured under separate commercial arrangements.
The F-16 is a candidate in the current F-X fighter competition in Brazil.
The F-16 is the world's most sought-after fighter. More than 4,000 aircraft have been delivered, hundreds more are on order for the U.S. and six other countries and production is expected to continue beyond 2010. Major upgrades for all F-16 versions are being incorporated to keep the fleet modern and fully supportable over the aircraft's long service life.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a leader in the design, development, systems integration, production and support of advanced military aircraft and related technologies. Its customers include the military services of the United States and allied countries throughout the world. Products include the F-16, F-22, F-35 JSF, F-117, C-5, C-27J, C-130, P-3 and U-2.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a unit of Lockheed Martin Corp., headquartered in Bethesda, Md. Lockheed Martin is a global enterprise principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced technology systems, products and services. Employing about 125,000 people worldwide, Lockheed Martin had 2001 sales of $24 billion.
Chile has signed an agreement to purchase 10 new F-16 aircraft to begin modernizing their air force. These will be the latest Block 50 version as shown in this artist's concept.
F-16 is a registered trademark of Lockheed Martin Corporation.
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Corresponding photo is available at this web site: http://www.lmaeronautics.com/gallery/products/combat_air/f16/f16_index03.html
SOURCE: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company
Contact: Sam Grizzle of Lockheed Martin, +1-770-494-3211, or
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