30 December 2011
Saudi Arabia confirmed on Friday that it had sealed a 29.4-billion-dollar deal with the United States to buy F-15SA fighter jets dpa reported
"The deal is aimed at enhancing the defence capabilities of the Saudi armed forces," said an official source at the Saudi Defence Ministry.
The source added that the deal would include 84 new planes manufactured by Boeing and the modernization of 70 others.
"The agreement also includes providing ammunition, spare parts, maintenance and training for several years to ensure that the kingdom will be in the highest possible position to defend its people and lands," said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity.
The White House Thursday lauded the deal as both a boost to the US economy and a sign of "the strong and enduring relationship" with Saudi Arabia, one of Washington's key allies in the region.
The first new planes will be delivered in early 2015, with the upgrades on existing planes to begin in 2014, said James Miller, the US principal deputy undersecretary of defence for policy.
It will take several years to implement the entire deal, and it will likely provide US jobs for at least a decade, he said