Romania is about to finalize a €5.9 billion deal to upgrade its air force with 32 American F-35 fighter jets. The government is now awaiting parliamentary approval to buy aircraft, equipment, training and ammunition. “For weeks the war has been on our doorstep. “Under no circumstances will we ignore this risk,” Defense Minister Tilvar said after Russian attacks on Danube river ports near the Romanian border.
Ukraine’s neighbor has recently expanded its air defense in a big way: by the end of next year, the HIMARS multiple missile system should be fully operational and three Bekartar drones should be delivered to Romania. The country is also expecting delivery of 32 F-16 jets from Norway by 2025. Four Patriot systems have already been delivered and contracts for three more are expected to be signed by the end of the year.
Romania has been a member of NATO since 2004 and intends to increase the defense budget to 2.5 percent of GDP over the next few years. “While Romania, as a NATO member, benefits from the alliance’s security guarantees and thus enjoys the best possible security, I can say with confidence that we are prepared for all eventualities,” Tilvar is certain. .