Following the recommendation of the Finnish Defense Force (FDF), Finland’s Ministry of Defense will procure 64 Lockheed Martin F-35A Block 4 aircraft. The fifth-generation fighter jet will replace the F/A-18 Hornet jets, which have served the Finnish Air Force since 1992 and will be progressively phased out between 2025 and 2030.
“The F-35 passed the Finnish requirements regarding the security of supply, industrial participation and cost,” said Antti Kaikkonen, Minister of Defence of the Republic of Finland. “In the military capability evaluation, the F-35 provided the best overall military capability to strengthen our defense system. The F-35 effectiveness across air, land, and sea received the highest rating in the assessment.”
The HX Fighter Program for the procurement of multirole fighter jets was launched in 2015. Five companies participated in the tender: Saab with the JAS 39 Gripen E/F, Dassault with the Rafale, an Airbus-led consortium with the Eurofighter Typhoon, Boeing with the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, and Lockheed Martin with the F-35A.
It is the second European tender to be won by Lockheed Martin this year. In June 2021, the Federal Council of Switzerland also chose to procure the Lockheed Martin F-35 as the next fighter jet to fly with the colors of the Swiss Air Force.