France, Germany, Spain conclude deal over new fighter jet

France, Germany and Spain have reached a deal over the next phases of the development of a new fighter jet project known as the Future Combat Air System (FCAS), which the countries consider Europe’s “most important tool” to preserve its sovereignty and security amid “fast growing threats”. .

“A demonstrator of the future fighter aircraft will fly in 2027, paving the way for an operational aircraft in 2040,” Xinhua news agency quoted French Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly as saying here on Monday.

The Next Generation Weapon System (NGWS) is the innovative core of the Future Combat Air System, which will replace the French Rafale and the German-Spanish Eurofighter jets.

The FCAS system will be composed of the new generation fighter jet, remote carriers, unmanned aerial platforms and a communication network called “combat cloud” designed to achieve information dominance.

“The NGWS will be able to achieve operational superiority in highly contested environments,” Parly and her German and Spanish counterparts said in a joint statement.

“The industrial organisation of the program has been set up appropriately to ensure the consistency and efficiency of the project, leveraging the best skills of each nation’s industries within a balanced, broad and deep partnership,” the statement said.