US Senator Jim Risch, who serves as the top Republican on the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, has reportedly approved the sale of Lockheed Martin Corp’s F-35 fighter jets to Greece.
This comes after approval from the committee’s chair, US Senator Bob Menendez, in February, as well as Republican co-chair Michael McCaul and the ranking Democrat on the committee, Gregory Meeks.
Now that the consensus of all four officials has been obtained, the US government will formally notify Congress of the sale of F-35s to Greece.
The issue of the sale of the F-35 jets to Greece is proceeding with the delivery of the first aircraft between 2028 and 2033, despite the fact that a Letter of Acceptance (LOA) is still expected from the US side.
The first instalment for the supply of the fifth-generation F-35 fighters is expected to amount to €350 million, following the finalization of the deduction of the so-called SSI (security, supply, information) from the final price of the US-engineered aircraft.
Cost estimates can be relatively accurate based on fixed characteristics, such as the number of a total of 20 F-35As that the Hellenic Air Force will take delivery of between 2028 and 2033.
The procedure followed for the approval of defense contracts entails the US State Department first informally sounding out Congress with the proposed sale, before formally notifying them of the deal.
Greece aims to acquire 20+20 F-35A Block 4s. Deliveries are expected to start in 2028.