Italy’s Finmeccanica SpA has signed $850 million in contracts in Rome with Israel’s Ministry of Defense for the sale of 30 M-346 advanced trainers to Israel. The contract is in the framework of a collaboration agreement between the Italian and Israeli governments. The contracts were signed through Italian operational companies Alenia Aermacchi, Telespazio and SELEX Elsag.
Alenia Aermacchi will provide the jet trainers, including aircraft, engines, maintenance, logistics, simulators, and training, for a total value of $1 billion, of which $600 million will accrue to Alenia Aermacchi.
Deliveries of the M-346s will begin in mid-2014. The jet trainers will replace the Israel Air Force A-4 Skyhawks.
The deal includes reciprocal procurement and Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. will build a high-resolution optical military satellite system for Earth observation, called OPTSAT-3000, for Telespazio, the prime contractor for the $200 million satellite, launch services, operational and logistical activities, and in-orbit testing and the commissioning for the Italian Ministry of Defense. IAI is due to deliver the satellite in 2015.
SELEX Elsag will supply the identification, communications and computer systems for flight controls for the 30 M-346 trainers, and IAI division Elta Systems Ltd. will supply NATO-standard communications, tactical links, and identification subsystems for two Conformal Airborne Early Warning (CAEW) aircraft for the Italian Air Force.
Finmeccanica chairman and CEO Giuseppe Orsi, said, “This agreement represents an important achievement not only for Finmeccanica and the operating companies Alenia Aermacchi, Telespazio and SELEX Elsag, but for the entire national economy.” He added that the agreement was the result of a fruitful collaboration among the Italian government, the Israeli government, the business world and the institutions, and that it bears witness to the high competitive ability of Made in Italy technology at an international level. “It demonstrates that investments in technology represent, for the Group and for the Italian industrial system, the right path for ensuring a sustainable development that further increases industrial capabilities, making them ever more competitive globally.”