The Greek and Israeli governments have approved an extensive defence agreement that includes the establishment of a flight school for the Hellnic Air Force (HAF), the provision of simulators and support and the procurement of 10 M-346 (LAVI) aircraft and maintenance of existing T-6 (EFRONI) trainers. The estimated value of the government-to-government agreement is put at $1.68 billion (€1.37 billion) over 20 years.
“This agreement […] is a long-term partnership that will serve the interests of both Israel and Greece, create hundreds of jobs in both countries, and promote stability in the Mediterranean,” commented Israeli Defence Minister, Benny Gantz. This is the largest defence procurement agreement between the two countries to date.
The programme calls for Elbit Systems to deliver training aircraft featuring its unique avionics and embedded training solutions, supply flight simulators and training aids and provide through-life logistical support over the contract period. The training centre to be established will me modelled on the experience of the Israeli Defence Force in operating its own flight academy.
Within the framework of the agreement, Elbit Systems will provide kits to upgrade and operate the HAF’s T-6 aircraft and will also provide training, simulators and logistical support. In the future, the parties will also consider areas of cooperation between the Israeli and Greek flight academies.
“The Greek government’s approval of this agreement is a historic step in further deepening the excellent defence relations between our two countries. This is not just a defense export agreement, but rather a partnership for at least 20 years," commented Yair Kulas, Director of SIBAT, the Israeli defence export promotion agency.