First JSF fighter jets will arrive in the Netherlands in 2019

jsfThe first JSF jet fighter aircraft will arrive in the Netherlands in 2019, ministers have told MPs. The Netherlands will buy eight aircraft a year from 2019, taking the total to 37.

The first of the jet fighters will be stationed at the airforce base in Leeuwarden. Later, the base at Volkel will also be equipped to take them. The JSF is replacing the current fleet of ageing F-16 jets.

Most of the JSFs will be used for training purposes and to defend Dutch air space. Just four will be available for military missions abroad, the cabinet said in its 51-page briefing.

The cost of the 37 planes is put at €4.6bn, while operating costs will run at ‘a maximum’ €285m a year.

In the briefing, the cabinet says the noise nuisance which will be caused by the jets is ‘acceptable’. This had been an important point for coalition partner PvdA to approve the purchase, broadcaster Nos points out.

In particular, when JSFs are based at Volkel, most of their night flights will be made elsewhere, the cabinet said.

Dutch industry has so far earned €1bn from its role in the development of the JSF but this could mount up to €9bn, the cabinet briefing said.

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