No Formal Offer For Procurement Of Used F-16 Jets, Says Minister

Total Croatia News

Used F-16 jets
Used F-16 jets

ZAGREB, Sept 2, 2020 – Defence Minister Mario Banozic on Wednesday denied information published on the website about the US company ProAero having submitted an official bid to procure 12 used F-16 jets for the Croatian Air Force in the amount of US$ 140-170 million, saying that bids would be submitted next week.

“There has been no official bid, offers will be submitted on September 9 and they will be submitted… by those who have been informed accordingly. Among the bidders is the United States with the new F-16 jets and Sweden with new Gripen jets,” Banozic said during a visit to Split.

Among the bids are also used European-made jets from France and Italy, the Rafal and the Eurofighter, the minister said, noting that bids for used F-16 planes had also been invited from Israel, Greece, and Norway.

The story about the purchase of used US F-16 fighter jets appeared “on a portal where certain self-proclaimed military analysts” have made the offer public, he said.

“All those who have carried incorrect information from that portal could have seen that the portal features a company that is one of the said bidders and that advertises itself on the portal,” he said.

Neither the date nor the supplier suit us, nor is this a binding offer, the minister said, adding that going public with the information was a thoughtless act that misinformed the public.

Asked if Croatia preferred the US offer, he said that when bids were submitted, a decision would be made based on a set of parameters.

“Naturally the final decision will be one between two countries, and it will be a political decision. A commission comprising people from the Defence Ministry, the Armed Forces, and other departments will put forward a proposal to the government, which will confirm the decision at a session,” said Banozic.

The portal has said that the US company ProAero is offering Croatia a squadron consisting of 12 used F-16 jets at a price between US$ 140 and 170 million, while 30 such fighter jets would cost between $399 and 424 million.

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