The United States and Russia may be looking at the upcoming Dubai Airshow as an opportunity to market their advanced, sixth-generation fighters with the US exhibiting its F-22 and F-35 jets, and Russia showcasing a scale model of the export version of the Su-57 at event.
The airshow will mark the debut of Lockheed F-35 at an event in the gulf, all variants of which have recorded over 12% fall in their prices.
Israel, a country with 16 F-35 combat aircraft in its inventory, is the only one in the Middle East to own stealthy aircraft. Washington stayed away from presenting cutting-edge weaponry in the Middle East events in the past, to maintain Israel’s military superiority in the region.
Display of the US Air Force’s F-22, and F-35 jets in Dubai could hint at a shift in its strategy of selling military equipment.
Meanwhile, Moscow will be presenting a scale-model of its Su-57E, which is an export version of Su-57 fighter. By targeting the wealthy gulf nations first, Russia was hoping to bag big-ticket purchases in the region where there’s dearth of stealth fighter jets.
“The Su-57E aircraft could be presented for the first time abroad during the Dubai Air Show in November,” Viktor Kladov, a senior Rostec official, had said in March 2019, at Malaysia’s LIMA-2019 Aerospace and Maritime exhibition.
It is not yet clear how, or if, the “Su-57E” export variant differs from the base Su-57 design; those answers could be forthcoming at this year’s Dubai Airshow, hinted Kladov.