Indonesia to Acquire Two Squadrons of New F-16s

Indonesia to Acquire Two Squadrons of New F-16s 27 December, 2019

Indonesian Air Force wants to acquire both US and Russian aircraft in the inventory. According to Indonesia’s next five-year strategic plan, running from 2020-2024, the country will pursue the goal of acquiring both F-16 Block 72 and Su-35.

The chief of the Indonesian Air Force Air Marshal Yuyu Sutisna talked to state-owned national news agency Antara, about the southeast Asian nation plans to submit a request to buy two squadrons of Lockheed Martin F-16 Block 72 fighters by January 2020.

Sutisna did not elaborate on the exact number of F-16s Indonesia plans to buy, as that will depend on how much money the government can set aside for the acquisition, which will be collected separately from the already allocated defence budget of $7.7 billion. He also made clear that Indonesia is still pursuing the Russian Sukhoi Su-35 Flanker interceptor, although that effort has encountered several delays. The Su-35s are earmarked as a replacement for Indonesia’s Northrop F-5E/F interceptors, which are no longer in service.

Indonesia is seeking 11 Su-35s from Russia and hopes to pay for these with both cash and the exchange of a variety of local commodities.

Indonesia’s Air Force operates Su-27SKs and Su-30MK2s acquired earlier. The island nation also works previous versions of the F-16, with 18 single-seat F-16Cs and five two-seater F-16Ds delivered under the Peace Bima Sena II program.

The acquisition program with Russia is also a concern for the country due to CAATSA, an American law that could apply a variety of sanctions to individuals and organisations that engage in “transactions with the intelligence or defence sectors of the Russian Federation.”


Issue 86