Croatia decided on the F-16 aircraft from Israel

Croatia will buy 12 used fighter planes F-16 C/D “Barak” from israel. The announced that the final decision was made last tuesday, during the Defense Council session. After that:

– After a long and exhaustive discussion of all four bids, we accepted the Commission’s proposal on the most favorable offer for the procurement of combat aircraft from Israel. The decision was made unanimously, we considered all the elements, from financial aspects to the needs of Croatia. We took into account national interests, our needs, opportunities and the development of Croatia, said President Kolinda Grabar Kitarović.

Closing session of the Defense Council: Discussing the purchase of military aircraft!

The prime minister emphasized:

– We have been examining all the details and we think we are making a responsible decision that will provide for the capacity of the Croatian Air Force for more than 30 years…

…The value of the deal of 12 used F-16 C/D Barak is estimated at over 500 million U.S. dollars, and Croatia will buy all 12. The offer includes weapons, two simulators, combat pilot training, and a guarantee that the state or Israel is behind the deal. The biggest competitor to this offer was the Swedish company SAAB, which offered new airplanes for 700 million euros, but the price did not include weapons. Following the recommendation of the Council, the Government must make an official decision and sign a contract with the bidder….

…Asked if we will be able to receive airplanes by 2020, Krstičević has said that it is “our dream”.

Some 30 F-16 C/D “Barak” jets have been retired by Israel’s Air Force in recent years, 12 of those were offerd to Croatia.

According to the website:

Israeli F-16s have extensive local modifications, with different avionics fits and higher gross weights, requiring changes in the landing gear and the use of new wheels. The maximum all-up weight of an Israeli F-16 is 48,000 pounds, as compared to 42,300 pounds for a USAF Block 40 F-16C. The third batch of F-16C/D’s is fitted with Elta’s EL/L-8240 ECM, replacing Lockheed Martin Defense Systems’ (LMDS, formerly Loral) AN/ALQ-178 Rapport III internal ECM. F-16C’s appear to have larger navigation lights mountings on the intake. These most likely house electronics. The F-16C/D’s ordered to compensate for the cancelled Lavi Project received Israeli ECM systems (manufactured by Elisra), and flight management computers (made by Elbit).

The The Croatian Air Force (Croatian: Hrvatsko ratno zrakoplovstvo or HRZ) operate the MiG-21, some of them were refurbished by the Ukrainian firm Ukrspetsexport during the years 2013-2014. All russian jets are at the 91th Air Base (91 Zrakoplovna Baza) Zagreb/Pleso. The MiG-21 will perform at this year Croatian International Airshow Varazdin.

Photo from 2017, when the MiG-21 serial 165 landed at Varazdin:

Main photo is a F-16I Sufa, and it is for illustration only. 

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