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Thread: Italy pulls out of JSF's IOT&E

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    Italy pulls out of JSF's IOT&E

    From Defense-Aerospace :

    Letter to Parliament (excerpt)
    (Source: Dutch Ministry of Defence; issued Oct. 7, 2008)
    (Issued in Dutch only; unofficial translation by defense-aerospace.com)

    As a result of the general consultation of 1 October last, I am informing you of the decision by Italy concerning its participation to the Initial Operational Test And Evaluation (IOT& E) of the JSF. (…/…)

    Recently the Italian project director has informed the Dutch, American and British partners that Italy will abandon its participation to the IOT& E and, with that, also of the purchase of the first test aircraft this year.

    As a reason, the new [Italian] government has invoked the need to reduce expenditure.

    The Italian decision has no financial consequences for the Netherlands.

    Moreover, the Italian government has reaffirmed its explicit support for the JSF program, and has confirmed the Italian participation to the System Development & Demonstration (SDD) phase.

    (Signed)
    Dr. Jack (J.G.) de Vries
    State Secretary for Defence

  2. #2
    All new Senior Contributor sohamsri's Avatar
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    The Italians are going to regret about "something" after a few years...
    " THe SiLEnt KNighT.

  3. #3
    Contributor Stan's Avatar
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    Doesnt this basically mean they are buying in a sense off shelf rather than having any input?
    Naval Warfare Discussion is dying on WAB

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    Contributor VarSity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan View Post
    Doesnt this basically mean they are buying in a sense off shelf rather than having any input?
    I think so.

    if that's the case, looks like the Us and UK are quids in!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post
    From Defense-Aerospace :
    Is this because if economic situation in Europe

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    More on DefenseNews :

    Italy Gives Up Test Role on JSF
    By Tom Kington
    Published: 13 Oct 14:32 EDT (18:32 GMT) Print | Email

    ROME - Italy has given up the chance of taking part in a pending initial evaluation stage within the Joint Strike Fighter program, the apparent consequence of budget cuts.

    While it remains a program partner, intending to buy up to 131 aircraft, and has invested in the development phase, Italy will no longer exercise an option to buy two low-rate production fighters which it would have used in the early testing and evaluation phase of the aircraft.

    "Italy was studying the possibility of joining the F-35 Initial Operational Test and Evaluation phase but has elected not to participate at this time," a Lockheed Martin official told Reuters.

    Lockheed Martin officials have previously said Italy was mulling the purchase of one fighter from the third stage of the Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) stage, and one from the fourth.

    An Italian defense official confirmed that as a result of withdrawing from the initial test and evaluation phase of the aircraft, Italy would not be buying the two low-rate production aircraft.

    Now, Britain and the Netherlands are the only other partners on the U.S. led program scheduled to take part in the initial operational test and evaluation program.

    Italy's decision to give up its role in the phase comes as the Italian government cuts military spending in 2009 by 6.9 percent, leaving a draft budget of 15.4 billion euros ($20.9 billion). Spending on investment, which includes procurement, is down 20.6 percent from 3.64 billion to 2.89 billion euros.

    Link

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    Italy will reduce JSF procurement to about 100, according to Flight International :

    Italy alters role in F-35 programme
    By Stephen Trimble
    DATE:18/10/08
    SOURCE: Flight International

    Italy has adjusted its role in the Lockheed Martin-led partnership for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, dropping an initial purchase order but signing two key industrial deals.

    Rome says it will not participate in the initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E) phase of the F-35 programme, declining a chance for its pilots to be involved in defining tactics and procedures ahead of first deliveries to the Italian air force.

    Accordingly, Italy has dropped plans to buy its first of two early examples of the F-35 in the third lot of the programme's low-rate initial production phase. The purchase of a planned second F-35 in LRIP lot 4 is also now unlikely.

    Italy's decision reduces Lockheed's total LRIP lot 3 order to 16 confirmed aircraft, including 14 from the US government and two for the UK. The Netherlands is also considering buying two F-35s to participate in the IOT&E phase, with a recommendation on whether to acquire the aircraft or buy Saab's rival Gripen NG expected before year-end.

    Italy's defence ministry initially planned to buy 131 F-35s, including 109 conventional take-off and landing F-35As for the air force and 22 short take-off and vertical landing F-35Bs for its navy. The aircraft would replace the AMX, Boeing AV-8B Harrier and part of the air force's Panavia Tornado fleets. However, this plan is believed to have recently been reduced to about 100 fighters, with a final order plan likely to be finalised in 2010.

    Italy's decision to drop out of the IOT&E phase comes as its government makes heavy cuts to this year's defence budget. However, the nation has moved forward on investing in a final assembly and checkout line for the JSF at Cameri airbase, which is aimed at producing and supporting all Italian and Dutch F-35s worth about $8.6 billion.

    Alenia Aeronautica also on 6 October confirmed its role as a second source to build 1,200 wings for the F-35 in Italy.

    But Italian industry remains concerned about its overall role in the JSF programme. Italy's Institute of International Affairs has released a report that concludes there are "still some critical issues relating to transferring technologies but also the need for European countries to increase their co-operation to increase their bargaining power".

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  8. #8
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    Sooner or latter the Italian navy is gonna need replacements for it's (few) harriers, so they will probably come back to the programm in some way in the future...

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