Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar answered the questions of journalists after the NATO Defense Ministers Meeting held in Brussels and lasted for two days. Minister Akar said that technical work has been initiated regarding the negotiations with the United States regarding the procurement of new F-16 fighter jets and the modernization of some existing F-16 warplanes. In his statement, Minister Akar said, “The F16s we have need to be renewed. Technical work has been started for both the supply of Block 70 Viper F16 and the modernization of some aircraft from our strategic ally, friend USA. We are following the process.” made statements.
On October 17, 2021, President Erdoğan, at a press conference at Atatürk Airport before his visit to Africa, on a question asked about Turkey's demand for F-16 fighter jets:
“Guys, this issue is obviously related to the F-35 issue. We do not have such a situation. We paid 1 billion 400 million dollars. In the face of these payments, the USA made such an offer.”
“Relating to this, we said that we should take these steps to meet our country's defense needs. For the continuity of today, we continue our efforts to bring our warplane fleet to a ready and modern state at all times. We are in an effort to further develop our fleet by modernizing F-16s and purchasing new ones. We need to get paid under this F-35 program. We talk about this in our meetings. We also attach importance to dialogue for the solution of the problem.”
had statements. As it is known, Turkey continues to work on the structural and hardware improvements of the F-16 Block 30s. The modernization and purchase of new aircraft by neighboring countries can be seen as one of the important reasons for Turkey's efforts to expand its combat aircraft fleet.
According to the news in Reuters and defencereview.gr, based on "anonymous sources", it was claimed that Turkey sent 40 F-16 Block 70 and 80 aircraft in HvKK to the USA a request letter for an upgrade to Block 70 level (LOR). .
The value of the demand is zero number of aircraft, number of modernization kits, spare parts, maintenance equipment, potential weapon systems etc. Considering things, it will amount to several billion dollars. The submitted request letter will be submitted to Congress after it has passed through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) channel.