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Esterline, Lockheed Martin enter new agreement within Belgium F-16 replacement program


Esterline Belgium (formerly Barco Defense & Aerospace) today announced the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with Lockheed Martin to address the Essential Safety Interests of the Belgian Air Component F-16s replacement program (ACCaP).


Esterlin Lockheed Martin enter new agreement within BelgiumF 16 replacement progra 001 Hill Air Force Base F-35A Lightning IIs fly in formation over the Utah Test and Training Range, March 30, 2017
(Credit: U.S. Air Force/R. Nial Bradshaw)


Through this agreement, the two companies are committed to developing long term partnerships if the Belgian government decides to choose the F-35A Lightning II as a successor for its aged fleet of F-16s. This partnership will focus on avionics and display systems.

Kristof Vierin, Vice President, Sales Manager for Avionics Systems, Esterline Belgium, said: "We are delighted to sign this agreement with Lockheed Martin today (which will) not only strengthen our relationship with Lockheed Martin for the coming decades, but will also result in increased activity for our Kortrijk-based facility".

Gregory Day, in charge of F-35 Business Development for Lockheed Martin in Belgium, added: "We look forward to strengthening our collaboration with Esterline in Belgium and to exploring opportunities for collaboration in the field of Research and Development. It will strengthen Esterline's position as a value provider, as well as our growing presence in several key markets".

In September 2015, Esterline Belgium, Ilias Solutions, Sabca and Sonaca, had already signed an initial agreement with Lockheed Martin, underlining their intention to develop more collaborations within the F-16 replacement program.

Lockheed Martin is one of the two main contenders competing for the BAF ACCaP program. On February, Lockheed Martin and the Eurofighter consortium (for the Typhoon II) sent their best and final offer, their definitive proposals for the replacement of the BAF's 54 aging F-16s, a program worth € 3.6 billion.