Turkey is planning to purchase 100 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters worth $16 billion in an attempt to meet its future air force needs, DefenSe Minister ismet YIlmaz was quoted as saying today.
“Turkey plans to buy 100 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, two of which will be delivered in 2015,” Yilmaz told the daily Milliyet.
It is the first public announcement by Ankara of how much the program will cost.
Turkey has long planned to purchase about 100 jets to replace its ageing F-4 and F-16 fleet, but increasing costs have hampered the acquisitions.
The Joint Strike Fighter, manufactured by Lockheed Martin, is the Pentagon’s most expensive weapons program ever.
The U.S. defense department plans to buy more than 2,400 of the aircraft at a cost of about 385 billion dollars. The cost of each plane is now well over 100 million dollars.