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SAAB, Brazil conclude Gripen fighter deal; sign contract


The Gripen multi-role fighter. A SAAB photo

STOCKHOLM (BNS): Sweden's SAAB and Brazilian Government on Monday signed a contract covering the development and production of 36 Gripen NG fighter aircraft for the Brazilian Air Force.

The signing of the contract, valued at 39.3 billion Swedish kronor (US$ 5.44 billion), marks the successful conclusion of the negotiation process under which Brazil, in December 2013, had selected the Gripen NG to be its next-generation fighter aircraft, through the F-X2 evaluation programme.

The contract entails for the production of 28 single-seat and eight two-seat Gripen NGs, SAAB said.

The two contracting parties, SAAB and the Brazilian Ministry of Defence through the Aeronautics Command (COMAER), also signed an Industrial Co-operation contract under which the former will deliver "substantial technology transfer" to the Brazilian industry.

The technology transfer will be performed over approximately ten years.

"The contract with COMAER for Gripen NG and the associated Industrial Co-operation contract will come into effect once certain conditions have been fulfilled. These include, among others, the necessary export control-related authorisations," SAAB said, adding that all of these conditions are expected to be fulfilled during the first half of 2015.

Brazilian aircraft maker Embraer, which signed an MoU with SAAB earlier this year, will have a leading role as the strategic partner in the F-X2 programme.

It will coordinate all development and production activities in Brazil on behalf of SAAB and, in addition to its own extensive work packages, will participate in systems development, integration, flight tests, final assembly and deliveries of the fighters.

The two companies will also be jointly responsible for the complete development of the two-seat variant of the Gripen.

Delivery of the Gripen NGs to the Brazilian Air Force will be undertaken from 2019 to 2024, SAAB said.

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