Israeli firm inks NIS 5.4 billion flight training deal with Greece

The Greek defense ministry signed a NIS 5.4 billion deal with an Israeli defense contractor for a flight simulation center for the Hellenic Air Force last week, the Defense Ministry announced Sunday.

The move comes as part of deepening ties between Israel, Greece and Cyprus, amid shared concerns over Turkey’s increasingly aggressive actions in the Eastern Mediterranean.

“This cooperation agreement rests on the excellence of Israeli industry and on the strong, longstanding relations between the defense establishments of Israel and Greece. I thank the Greek defense minister, Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos, for advancing this deal, which we discussed during the latest trilateral meeting in Cyprus,” Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz said in a statement.

Under the 20-year agreement, which was signed last Friday, Israel’s Elbit Systems will supply and maintain dozens of M-346 and T-6 training planes, equipped with advanced avionics, along with a number of ground-based flight simulators to Greece, according to the defense contractor.

“The defense and industrial cooperation between the Israeli Defense Ministry and Greek Ministry of National Defense gets another strengthening today with the signing of this deal, the largest ever between these two countries, led by Elbit Systems,” Yair Kulas, the head of the Defense Ministry’s International Defense Cooperation Directorate.

According to Israel’s Defense Ministry, the two countries are also discussing the possibility of establishing flight schools in the future.

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