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Pilatus planes French Air Force buys Swiss training aircraft

Swiss manufacturer Pilatus has announced the sale of 21 training aircraft to three different customers. The deals are worth more than CHF300 million ($292.6 million). (SRF,

The French Air Force last month signed a contract for 17 PC-21 planes used to train future military pilots, according to a company statement published on Wednesday.
Two PC-21s each have also been sold to the Royal Jordanian Air Force and the British-based QinetiQ company. The latter operates a training centre for flight test engineers and test pilots.

Jordan had initially ordered PC-9 aircraft but later re-evaluated their requirement. The fleet of ten PC-21s provide the backbone of Jordan’s future training scheme, the company stated.

The deals would help secure jobs at its factory in central Switzerland, the company added. In 2015, Pilatus reported a turnover of CHF1.1 billion and employed 1,905 people, mostly at its factory in Stans – outside Lucerne.

Founded in 1939, Pilatus Aircraft is the only Swiss company to develop, produce and sell aircraft to customers around the world, according to the company website.
Non-governmental organisations have raised accusations that some Pilatus aircraft have been armed after delivery to the customers, and used for combat duties.

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