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Saab and Sweden are battling Gripen's Finnish demand of 100 billion

Saab and Sweden are battling Gripen’s Finnish demand of 100 billion

The final content was presented to Finland’s Tricky Show on Friday morning.

In its order book, Saab today has orders for 60 Jas jets of the latest version of the Gripen E for Sweden and 36 for Brazil. But Finland places huge demands on the fighter system as a whole. So Saab sacrifices the bid for the 64 Gripen E with two radar aircraft and a combat command called Global Eye to Finland. This should give Finland new opportunities to explore 50 km across Russia.

The Finnish order does not only mean delivery of aircraft and weapons, but also spare parts and future modifications until 2060.

If Finland gets rid of it, maybe it should be the largest order yet?

Certainly one of the biggest industrial orders in Sweden, if not the biggest in Sweden ever, and definitely the biggest for Saab, says Saab CEO Micael Johansson for DN.

Saabs vd Micael Johansson.

Photo: Denise Willikengas

What does that mean for SABB?

That could mean a lot, whether from the long-term continuous development of the entire Gripen system or the Global Eye System. Micael Johansson answers, adding: a long-term production process, and deep cooperation with Finnish industry across borders in terms of further development of these systems:

– It will also mean continuous excellence in technology development in many areas, and an ecosystem in the North region closely linked to the gripe system and the Global Eye system. Then, of course, a much greater volume in the business of the battle plan. A very important work, concludes the CEO of Saab.

Saab is one of five manufacturers that on Thursday submitted their final, “best and last bid” for Finnish defense. But difficult to get words is far from normal.

Bids are taking place in intense competition with the aviation industries of the great powers USA, Great Britain and France (see diagram).

Finland offer is also Sweden’s practice. Saab is supported by the government, the armed forces and the Swedish Defense Materiel Administration. That is why Defense Minister Peter Holtqvist sent a letter to his Finnish colleague Ante Kalkonen at the same time as a difficult tender.

“Dear you, I am writing to confirm the Swedish government’s full support for Saab’s final presentation,” Hultqvist begins the letter read by DN.

In the letter, Hultqvist emphasized the similarities between our two countries, the close collaboration and how cost-effective the Gripen system is. The government pledges that if Finland buys Swedish, “procurement coordination” will take place.

The offer is designed to meet high Finnish requirements. It is a Finnish requirement that you are not the only user of any part of the capacity. Hence, harmonizing Swedish and Finnish requirements for capacity and delivery is a prerequisite, says Peter Holtqvist for DN.

The minister’s words about high Finnish demands are not polite. The Finnish Air Force maintains a high professional standard and already has more advanced weapons systems on its combat aircraft compared to Sweden. The Finnish order means that the Swedish and Finnish Gripen E will be delivered side by side from 2025. Then the Swedish Gripen E must be “sharpened”, which the government has also requested from Riksdag’s green light in the spring budget.

Swedish Air Force Commander Major General Karl Johan Edström was also present at the SABB press conference.

Finland’s purchase of combat aircraft is named HX (H stands for today’s Hornet and X is for replacement). It also differs from other countries by its high requirements in a number of areas.

Early in 2018, industries were invited for ‘design by cost’ deliveries. The cost of the purchase was set at 10 billion euros, equivalent to 100 billion Swedish kronor. The contract is valued at 9.4 billion euros, in addition to 600 million euros to join the rest of the Finnish armed forces.

Within this price, the industry should be able to offer a complete system that also includes all plan and maintenance weapons in Finland and system development up to 2060. Requirements depend on different threat scenarios.

In the winter of 2020, it was verified through strict flight tests in Finland that the specifications also corresponded to reality. Among the competitors, the American F-35 is the most advanced. But Lockheed Martin, which had planned to show four F-35s in Finland, only landed two – at which point one of them ran into technical problems.

Of the five competitors, with the exception of Saab, Boeing only reports how many aircraft it has on offer. Boeing wants to sell 50 single-seat Super Hornets and 14 Growlers, an attack version with advanced electronic warfare.

For Saab, the final presentation is broad: more than 400 electronic documents covering, if printed, 10,000 pages. Now tenders will be tested in war games:

According to the Ministry of Defense, “In the final stage, the military capability of the HX system of each candidate is evaluated by the effectiveness of a long-range war game.” Plain text: A simulation where an aircraft must be able to defend and fight from the rules of roads, with maintenance and weapons. It is about a sustainable two-week war course.

At the end of the year, the Finnish defense will present its election to the government. Then consideration must also be given to aspects of defense and security policy. A decision on which fighter plane Finland will choose will come at the beginning of the year.

Text has been updated.

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