Brazil in Talks to Sell Embraer C-390 Planes to Sweden
A Potential Brazil-Sweden Defense Collaboration
In a recent announcement, Brazilian Defense Minister Jose Mucio revealed his plans to travel to Sweden for negotiating a potential sale of Embraer’s KC-390 military aircraft. Brazil has expressed its interest in selling three or four of these aircraft to Sweden. On the other hand, Sweden has shown interest in selling more of its Saab Gripen fighter jets to Brazil. This potential exchange of military aircrafts underscores an ongoing defense collaboration between the two nations.
Details of the Potential Exchange
The KC-390 military aircraft, also known as the C-390 Millennium, is a product of Embraer, a Brazilian aerospace conglomerate. This military cargo aircraft is gaining traction in the European market as a potential replacement for the aging C-130H Hercules. The aircraft has won firm orders from the Portuguese and Hungarian Air Forces and has also been selected by the Netherlands and Austria. It is also a strong contender in the Czech Republic, and Embraer has high aspirations for a major contract in India.
On the other hand, the Saab Gripen fighter jets are a product of the Swedish company, Saab. The company already has a joint Gripen fighter production line in Brazil, where 15 of the 36 aircraft currently ordered will be produced. The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) has also expressed its intention to place a second order for 36 or 40 F-39 Brazilian Gripens E fighters, indicating a potential increase in these numbers.
Embraer and Saab: From Rivals to Partners
Embraer and Saab have a unique history. Once rivals in the regional aircraft market in the 1980s, the two companies have now become partners. This partnership was solidified when Gripen was chosen to equip the Brazilian Air Force (FAB). Under the contract, Embraer is assembling some fighters at its facilities in Gavião Peixotono, Brazil, and is also providing support to conduct tests before delivering the aircraft to the FAB.
In April, the two companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to deepen their collaboration in several areas, primarily related to business development and engineering opportunities. This collaboration aims to position the C-390 Millennium aircraft as the preferred solution to meet the Swedish Air Force’s tactical airlift requirements. The companies are also evaluating the integration of Saab equipment and systems on the C-390 Millennium aircraft.
The Future of Brazil-Sweden Defense Collaboration
The potential exchange of military aircrafts between Brazil and Sweden represents a significant development in their defense collaboration. This move aligns with the strategic partnership of their manufacturers and their overlapping interests. With the potential sale of Embraer’s KC-390 military aircraft to Sweden and Sweden’s interest in selling more of its Saab Gripen fighter jets to Brazil, both nations are poised to strengthen their defense capabilities and continue their collaboration in the defense sector.
As the negotiations for the C-390 Millennium and F-39 Gripen are likely to be conducted jointly, this collaboration could herald a new era of defense cooperation between Brazil and Sweden. The agreement could pave the way for a long-term strategic partnership, offering substantial benefits for both nations in terms of defense capabilities, technological advancements, and economic growth.
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