Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Saudi In-Country Final Assembly Of Eurofighter Typhoon Delays

By Douglas Barrie

Saudi Arabia faces deferring in-country Eurofighter Typhoon final assembly or having to delay in-service targets for the fighter.The Saudi regime, the British government and BAE Systems are discussing alternatives to the original plan as a result of the effect of repeated hold-ups by Saudi Arabia regarding the choice of a build site. These options include reassigning back to the U.K. some of the aircraft originally slated for final assembly in Saudi Arabia.

The two countries concluded a deal for 72 Typhoons in September 2007. The intent was for the first 24 aircraft to be built at BAE Systems’ Warton site in England, with the remainder to undergo final assembly in the kingdom.A preferred location is understood to have been decided upon, but the extent of the interruption and the work required to prepare the facility means the final assembly schedule almost certainly cannot be met. Under the original plan, the first Typhoons were expected to roll off the Saudi line in 2011.“Discussions continue between the Saudi and U.K. governments on the arrangements for the assembly of Typhoon aircraft in the kingdom. The details are presently confidential,” says a British Defense Ministry


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