Oman orders 12 Typhoon fighters and 8 Hawk trainers
BAE Systems announced on 21 December, 2012, that it has signed a contract with the Sultanate of Oman for the purchase of 12 Eurofighter Typhoon multi-role aircraft and eight Hawk Advanced Jet Trainers. Deliveries are expected to commence in 2017.
The contract includes in-service support by BAE Systems to the Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO). According to Flight International, the Oman contract also comprises a provision to include the Euroradar consortium's E-Scan active electronically scanned array radar.
Oman becomes the seventh country in the world, and the second in the Middle East, to operate the Typhoon, joining the air forces of the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria and Saudi Arabia. The multi-role Typhoons will join the RAFO F-16C/D Block 50 fighter force and replace its fleet of Jaguar fighter aircraft. This will make Oman the first country to operate the Typhoon alongside new Advanced Block F-16 Falcons. The current fleet of 12 F-16C/D will be increased by another 12 jets ordered in December 2011, with six more on option.
Oman becomes the second operator of the Hawk AJT in the region, as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia ordered the type in May 2012 to also provide lead-in fighter training (LIFT) for its future Typhoon pilots. The total number of Hawk family aircraft sold, or on order, now stands at 998, BAE Systems reports. The number includes Oman's Hawks delivered in the early 1990s, the RAFO currently operates four BAe Hawk Mk.103 twin-seat trainers (which includes one attrition replacement) and the remaining eleven out of twelve delivered Mk.203 single-seater combat-capable advanced training aircraft. This order of Hawk Advanced Jet Trainers will give Oman a up-to-date Lead-In Fighter Trainer, and is expected to allow the retirement of the four Mk.103 basic jet trainers, while also relieving the APG-66H equipped Hawk Mk.203 single-seater light attack aircraft of their training role.
This contract is further recognition that both Typhoon and Hawk are leading aircraft in their class, providing the best capabilities available.
As well as supplying aircraft, we will provide in-service support to the Royal Air Force of Oman's (RAFO) operational tasks.
Deliveries are expected to commence in 2017.
Responding to the announcement Guy Griffiths, Group Managing Director for BAE Systems' International business said: “Receiving this contract is an honour and is excellent news for both BAE Systems and the Eurofighter Typhoon consortium. BAE Systems has a long history of working in Oman and we are delighted this contract will enable us to continue to work together. We believe that Oman has now added the most advanced fighter jet and proven training aircraft, available in the world, to its military portfolio.
“We look forward to working in partnership with Oman's Ministry of Defence, and the Royal Air Force of Oman, to ensure this is a highly successful programme that maximises the potential of both Hawk and Typhoon.”
Oman becomes the seventh country in the world, and the second in the Middle East, to operate the Typhoon, joining the air forces of the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria and Saudi Arabia.
This order of Hawk AJT's follows an order from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in May of this year. This order takes the total number of Hawk aircraft sold, or on order, to 998.
This announcement also strengthens the long standing relationship between ourselves and the Sultanate of Oman. Oman currently operates Jaguar fighter aircraft and trains pilots on an earlier variant of the BAE Systems Hawk.
Source: BAE Systems News / milavia.net - 21 December 2012
Photo: The decision by the Sultanate of Oman to purchase 12 Typhoon and eight Hawk Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) aircraft. (Photo by baesystems.com)