Tunisia will receive eight T-6C Texan II training aircraft in 2022 and Textron Aviation Defense is providing long-lead items to support the aircraft.
Earlier in June, the US Department of Defense (DoD) awarded Textron USD12.5 million related to Tunisia’s T-6C Texan II programme.
The Foreign Military Sales (FMS) award provides for the procurement of long-lead production items and spares to support delivery of eight T-6Cs to the North African nation in 2022, as well as conducting an in-country site survey for basing.
Work on a $12.49 million FMS contract, awarded by the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, will be performed in Wichita, Kansas and is expected to be completed by October 2022.
Tunisia is in dire need of new trainer aircraft to replace its ageing fleet and allow it to continue training pilots to support counter-terrorism and border security missions.
This contract comes about 19 months after the US State Department approved the sale of up to 12 Texan II trainer aircraft to Tunisia for an estimated USD234 million. “The proposed sale will replace Tunisia’s ageing trainer fleet and allow Tunisia to continue training pilots to support Tunisia’s counter-terrorism and border security missions,” the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in October 2019.
Besides the T-6C trainer approval, the US government also approved four AT-6 Wolverine light attack versions of the aircraft for Tunisia in February 2020 .
Both the T-6C and AT-6 share an 85% commonality in structure, avionics, and other systems, and are expected to replace the Tunisian Air Force’s (Al‐Quwwat al‐Jawwiya al‐Jamahiriyah At’Tunisia) fleet of Aero L-39 Albatros and SIAI-Marchetti SF 260 Warrior aircraft that have been in service since 1995 and 1974 respectively.