In response to Bulgaria's request for proposal, Saab has offered eight Gripen C/D fighters with the MS20 update, reports See News.
According to Saab, the first Gripen can be delivered within two years of signing the contract. All the fighters will have the MS20 capability update which greatly increases their combat and communication capabilities.
“Gripen is an advanced multirole fighter at the start of its development life time. The Swedish offer meets the requirements of the Bulgarian government regarding budget, delivery schedule and capabilities of the new aircraft,” says Joakim Wallin, Director Export and International Relations, Swedish Defence Material Administration.
Saab has also offered partnerships to Bulgarian companies for potential cooperation in the field of security and supply. “When Bulgaria selects Gripen, Saab and Sweden are ready to co-operate with the Bulgarian defence industry in areas such as aircraft maintenance, transferring important know-how to the country that would help to sustain and create skilled jobs”, says Jonas Hjelm, Senior Vice President and head of Saab business area Aeronautics.
Earlier this year in June, the Bulgarian parliament had approved $1.9 billion for acquisition of fighter jets and armoured vehicles. In July, Bulgaria sent requests for proposals for supply of up to 16 new or used fighters to seven countries. Besides Sweden, the US and Italy have also responded to Bulgaria's request for proposal, offering F-16/F-18 and Eurofighter respectively.
A complete assessment of the offers will be done this month by a working group, post which a second evaluation and negotiations with the bidders will be conducted by another group appointed by the Bulgarian prime Minister.
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Image: Louise Levin, Försvarsmakten