Gen. Bonotto would like the opportunity of bidding for European partner nation’s transport requirement with the Embraer KC-390. (David Oliver)

Briefing the press on 10th May at Saab’s facility in Linköping, southern Sweden, Brigadier General Marcio Bruno Bonotto, head of the Brazilian Air force’s procurement command was full of praise for the progress being made for the production of 36 JAS-39E Gripen fighters.

Brigadier General Marcio Bruno Bonotto, head of the Brazilian Air force’s procurement command. (Brazilian Air Force)

Speaking to journalists, Gen. Bonotto stated that: “even though (Brazil is in the midst) of a financial crisis, the Gripen is a priority. We also have the financial support to ensure Gripen deliveries on time and as planned.” He was also keen to promote Brazilian technology, including the Embraer KC-390 turbofan freighter: “We would not want to be in the position when our partners never buy our products … The KC-390 is a spectacular plane and it would be great if Sweden acquired them.”

However, Colonel Magnus Liljegren, the head of the air force department at the Swedish armed forces headquarters told armadainternational.com that the air force’s ageing fleet of six Lockheed Martin C-130H transports would undergo a limited avionics mid-life update between 2020 and 2024, and that no replacement aircraft would be selected before their expected out of service date in late 2030.