The last country to receive a batch of F-16s is Romania. A total of 12 airframes (9 A-models and 3 B-models) were acquired second-hand from Portugal in 2016.
Romania was looking for a replacement of their venerable Mig-21 Lancers for years. Financial difficulties always prevented this from happening. In 2015 the first contacts were laid between Portugal and Romania to acquire a batch of F-16s for the latter. Portugal was selling a number of their 45-airframe string fleet and a deal was signed in 2016 for a batch of 9 A-models and 3 B-models, all updated to the latest MLU standards. This batch first originated from the Peace Atlantis II order that Portugal itself placed with the United States in the 1990's. So this marks the first time F-16s are sold for a second time to fly for a third country in their careers.
FAR F-16AM #1606
is coming in for landing at Aviano AB on December 15th, 2016 en route for delivery to Romania. [Photo by Daniele Faccioli]
The Romanian government has expressed its interest in buying another batch of F-16s in the future to further complement their F-16 fleet. In the short term another 5 airframes (4 A-models and 1 B-model) are needed. Romania is again looking at Portugal to supply the remaining Peace Atlantis II airframes to them all together. In the long term another 36 airframes are projected. Time will tell what will come from this planning.
Please refer to the F-16 Units
section for an overview of units.