The Royal Norwegian Air Force has taken delivery of the first three F-35 Lightning II aircraft on November 3, for the deployment at Ørland Air Base.
“Receiving the first three aircraft is a major milestone for Norway. On November 10th, Norway will celebrate First Aircraft Arrival of the first three F-35s on Norwegian soil. Achieving this milestone is a major step towards increased operational capability for the future,” says Major General Morten Klever, Program Director for the F-35 program in Norway's Ministry of Defence.
“This is an historic event. The arrival of the first F-35 in Norway at this time shows that we have reached the timeline set for the acquisition. The program delivers on all key criteria: time, cost and performance. Today we are both proud and happy. The Royal Norwegian Air Force is looking forward to starting their training with the F-35,” says Major General Klever.
Norway has taken delivery of 10 F-35s to date. Seven of those aircraft are at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, where Norwegian pilots are in training. From 2018, Norway will receive six aircraft annually up until, and including, 2024. The Norwegian government has plans to purchase up to 52 F-35s.