Thailand to Recieve Swedish Gripen Jet Fighters in 2011

The Swedish cabinet on January 24, 2008 formally approved that the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) should sign a deal with the Thai Air force regarding the sale of the planes and a radar surveillance system.Swedish Defence Minister Sten Tolgfors also welcomed Thailand’s decision to order six JAS-39 Gripen jet fighters for $593 million.
“It is very positive that Thailand chose the Swedish Gripen when the country is to renew its air defence systems,” Tolgfors said in statement.
The deal was worth some 3.8 billion kronor (593 million dollars), a Swedish Defence Ministry statement said, adding that deliveries were due in 2011.
Approval was also necessary from the Swedish Inspectorate of Strategic Products (ISP) that controls the export of military equipment and products that may have both a civilian and a military use.
When Thailand placed the order in October, it generated criticism from, among others, Amnesty International, the Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society and opposition Green Party members of parliament that cited that Thailand was then under military rule.
Foreign Minister Carl Bildt at the time rejected calls for cancelling the deal, noting that elections were due in December.
The JAS-39 Gripen jet fighter has been deployed by the air forces of South Africa, Hungary and the Czech Republic, and is used for training by Britain.

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