Saudi Arabia signs $3 bn deal with Britain to buy trainer jets

By on Friday, May 25th, 2012

Saudi’s defence ministry has signed a $3 billion deal with Britain to buy trainer jets for the kingdom’s air force, SPA state news agency reported on Wednesday.

The deal also includes simulators, ground and training equipment and spare parts, SPA said, quoting a defence ministry official.

The official said the new jets would help qualify Saudi pilots “to use fourth generation jet fighters in full professionalism and efficiency.”

Saudi Defence Minister Prince Salman bin Abdul Aziz in April visited Britain, a major supplier of weapons to the oil-rich kingdom.

Saudi Arabia in 2006 ordered 72 Eurofighter Typhoon fighters in a deal valued at $32.9 billion. The multi-role aircraft is built by a consortium of European firms in which Britain’s BAE Systems has a 33-percent share.

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