Germany aims to hold talks with European partners in 2016 to develop a new fighter to replace Tornado fighter jets.
Reuters reported that a draft document by the Defense Ministry on ‘military aviation strategy’ said it was still unclear whether the new jet would be manned or unmanned.
The jet would be designed for both options and will be then flown with or without a pilot based on the type of deployment, the news agency reported Sunday.
The jet is likely to be developed by one or more European companies. Germany’s armed forces are also looking into whether it would be possible to extend usage of Tornado jets into the 2030s, the news agency reported.
The Tornado jet, which Germany has been using since 1981 - although it now also has the newer Eurofighter jet - was also made in an international consortium called Panavia. The Tornado jets had been due to be phased out in the mid-2020s.
A spokesman for the Defence Ministry said the document had not yet been agreed with the other ministries so he could not comment on it.