Home » Aviation » Boeing Awarded $1.16B Super Hornet Contract for Kuwait Fighter Program

Boeing Awarded $1.16B Super Hornet Contract for Kuwait Fighter Program

Two U.S. Navy F/A-18E Super Hornets on March 9, 2018. US Air Force Photo

Boeing was awarded a $1.16 billion long-anticipated contract for 28 F/A-18E/F Super Hornet tactical fighters for the Kuwait Air Force, according to a Friday Pentagon contract announcement.

The 22 single-seat ‘E’ and six two-seat ‘F’ variants are set to replace Kuwait’s 27 current crop of F-18C Hornet fighters.

According to the notification, the contract also provides for long-lead radar warning receivers and aircraft armament equipment. The initial contract pays Boeing $275 million and is set to run until 2022.

The State Department issued a notification to Congress that Kuwait was set to by 40 Super Hornets in late 2016.

“Kuwait is a strategic partner in maintaining stability in the region. The acquisition of the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet aircraft will allow for greater interoperability with U.S. forces, providing benefits for training and possible future coalition operations in support of shared regional security objectives,” read the November 2016 notification.

The Kuwait deal is one of several potential international competitions for the Super Hornet, including Finland, India, Switzerland and Germany. In addition to U.S. Navy planned purchases, additional international sales could keep the Missouri-line production line open into the 2030s.

The following is the complete March 30, 2018 contract award.

The Boeing Co., St. Louis, Missouri, is being awarded an undefinitized contract action with a not-to-exceed value of $1,165,068,022 for long-lead non-recurring engineering required to develop a baseline configuration for the production and delivery of 22 F/A-18E and 6 F/A-18F Super Hornets in support of the government of Kuwait. In addition, this contract provides for long-lead radar warning receivers and aircraft armament equipment. Work will be performed in Hazelwood, Missouri (47.2 percent); Goleta, California (22.3 percent); El Segundo, California (20.1 percent); Fort Worth, Texas (3.2 percent); Bloomington, Minnesota (1.7 percent); Mesa, Arizona (1.6 percent); Orlando, Florida (1.5 percent); Greenlawn, New York (0.8 percent); Deerfield Beach, Florida (0.5 percent); Wayne, New Jersey (0.4 percent); Torrance, California (.3 percent); Stillwater, Oklahoma (0.2 percent); and Minneapolis, Minnesota (0.2 percent), and is expected to be completed in September 2022. Foreign Military Sales funds in the amount of $275,850,901 will be obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured pursuant to 10 U.S. Code 2304(f)(2)(E). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity (N00019-18-C-1025).

  • Rocco

    Well this will keep the line open & people working!

  • Leroy

    We need more than one manufacturer of fighters, so this is good news for national defense. With that in mind, hopefully Boeing will be awarded the T-X contract. They look to have a fine entrant, and LM has plenty of work to do with their F-35 line. We have got to keep Boeing in this business. For the sake of competent multiple competitors when 6th gen has its fly-off.

    Of course I expect we’ll see partnerships with allied nation’s companies like BAE, SAAB, perhaps even Eurofighter. These hi-tech prototypes are just too expensive, too complex for one company to build, and let’s face it – the U.S. isn’t the only country with inventive, cutting-edge aerospace manufacturers. And then there’s sales, allied buyers wanting their “piece of the action”. Like we have with F-35 partner countries. The mold is set. Anyway, like I said, this sale is very good news. Hopefully there will be more.

    • DaSaint

      I can see the Indian Navy purchasing a batch of 24. Finland and Switzerland look like locks, for different reasons.

      There’s no way Germany purchases any, as they’re a partner in the Eurofighter.

      • RunningBear

        Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Italy and possibly Belgium and Poland (NATO countries) are members of the F-35 program or are considering the F-35. Finland and Switzerland could do worse than provide additional NATO squadrons of F-35s for defense commonality and solidarity.

        No reference if these are possibly considered as part of the “Block 3” SBugs that the USN is purchasing??? Could help to get that product line up and running.

        • DaSaint

          Finland probably doesn’t want to seem too overt in buying a 5th Gen fighter. So I could see the SH as a symbol of western-leaning without a poke in the Russian eye.

          As neither Finland nor Switzerland are part of NATO, non F-35 purchases make sense.

      • Corporatski Kittenbot 2.0

        Neither of those European states are locks.

        The Lightning probably has the edge in Finland simply because from my reading, they want the best aircraft, and that isn’t the Rhino.

        The Swiss will have a referendum and any acquisition will be defeated, just like it was last time.

  • James Goodwin

    There is an option for adding 12 more Super Hornets.

  • Todd

    I feel a disturbance in the Lockmart Force, Obi Wan Dueenee you’re our only hope, you need to defeat Darth Boeing and his evil F18 clone fighers. Use the schwartz Dueene, use the schwartz!

  • Kim Chul Soo

    Kuwait can’t pay for their own aircraft?