BREAKING: State Department approves sale of 40 F-35 fighter jets to Greece in a deal worth $8.6B

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State Department approves sale of 40 F-35 fighter jets to Greece in a deal worth $8.6B and another sale of 40 new F-16s to Turkey as well as upgrades to 79 of its existing fleet valued at up to $23B.

Granted to Greece 2 C-130H AF, 60 Bradleys , hundreds of cargo vehicles, 4 LCS, 3 Protector-class coastal patrol boats, 10 P-3 Orion engines, priority for MRAP vehicles and KC-135R aerial refueling aircraft.

The State Department notified Congress of its approval of the $23 billion F-16 sale to Turkey, along with a companion $8.6 billion sale of advanced F-35 fighter jets to Greece, late Friday. The move came just hours after Turkey deposited its “instrument of ratification” for Sweden’s accession to NATO with Washington, which is the repository for alliance documents and after several key members of Congress lifted their objections.

NATO ally Turkey has long sought to upgrade its F-16 fleet and had made its ratification of Sweden’s membership contingent on the approval of the sale of the new planes. The Biden administration had supported the sale, but several lawmakers had expressed objections due to human rights concerns.

Full press release below


WASHINGTON, January 26, 2024 - The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Greece of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Conventional Take Off and Landing (CTOL) aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of $8.6 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.

The Government of Greece has requested to buy up to forty (40) F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Conventional Take Off and Landing (CTOL) aircraft; and forty-two (42) Pratt & Whitney F135-PW-100 engines (40 installed, 2 spares). Also included are AN/PYQ-10 Simple Key Loaders; KGV-135A embedded secure communications devices; Cartridge Actuated Devices/Propellant Actuated Devices (CAD/PAD); impulse cartridges, chaff, and flares; Full Mission Simulators and system trainers; electronic warfare systems and Reprogramming Lab support; logistics management and support systems; threat detection, tracking, and targeting systems; Contractor Logistics Support (CLS); classified software and software development, delivery and integration support; transportation, ferry, and refueling support; weapons containers; aircraft and munitions support and support equipment; integration and test support and equipment; aircraft engine component improvement program (CIP) support; secure communications, precision navigation, and cryptographic systems and equipment; Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) equipment; spare and repair parts, consumables, and accessories, and repair and return support; minor modifications, maintenance, and maintenance support; personnel training and training equipment; classified and unclassified publications and technical documents; warranties; and U.S. Government and engineering, technical, and logistics support services, studies, and surveys; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The estimated total cost is $8.6 billion.

This proposed sale will support the foreign policy goals and national security of the United States by improving the air capabilities and interoperability of a NATO Ally that is a force for political and economic stability in Europe.

The proposed sale will allow Greece to modernize its air force and improve Greece’s ability to provide for the defense of its airspace, contribute to NATO missions to preserve regional security and defend NATO Allies, and maintain interoperability with U.S. and NATO forces. The F-35 will offset the increasing obsolescence of other Hellenic Air Force aircraft such as the F-4 and Mirage 2000. Greece will have no difficulty absorbing these articles and services into its armed forces.

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region. 

The principal contractors will be Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company, Fort Worth, TX, and Pratt & Whitney Military Engines, East Hartford, CT. The purchaser typically requests offsets. Any offset agreement will be defined in negotiations between the purchaser and the contractor.

Implementation of this proposed sale will not require the assignment of any additional U.S. Government or contractor representatives to Greece.

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

The description and dollar value is for the highest estimated quantity and dollar value based on initial requirements. Actual dollar value will be lower depending on final requirements, budget authority, and signed sales agreement(s), if and when concluded.

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