SHAH ALAM: Tunisia is reportedly in talks with Kuwait to purchase its Hornet fleet, an African based blog is reporting. Military Africa on its Twitter handle stated:
Tunisia in talks with Kuwait for the purchase of the Kuwaiti F-18 Hornets. The F-18 Hornets will likely be modernized in the United States before integrating the Tunisian Air Force.
I cannot confirmed the veracity of the report but it appears that Military Africa is good in getting stories about African defence scene so it is likely the report is correct though it does not mean that a contract will be sign in the immediate future. It must be noted that Tunisian Air Force is reportedly set to take delivery of 14 Lockheed Martin F-16V fighters in 2023 though I have not seen any US official notice for purchase of the Vipers.
The US State Department in February announced that it had approved the possible Foreign Military Sale to Tunisia of four AT-6C Wolverine Light Attack Aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of $325.8 million. The Tunisian military also have received a number of military equipment gifted from the US including 24 OH-5D Kiowa light helicopters.
So there is a possibility that if the Tunisian government to reduce the cost of buying new fighters – the air force still operates F-5s – by getting them at friendly prices from another Arab government. They will only need to pay for upgrade and other works on the Hornets, a cheaper option than buying new F-16s.
As you are aware the Kuwaitis are getting Eurofighter Typhoons and Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornets to replace their Hornet fleet.
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