Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace AS and Boeing have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with plans to expand ongoing cooperation, with the opportunity to create new jobs in Norway and develop the industry, Kongsberg announced on 18th June. The MoU includes the maintenance and support of P-8 aircraft. The comprehensive MoU agreement with KONGSBERG will be able to contain maintenance and support for the Norwegian P-8 fleet. This will entail a need for a new maintenance center for production and maintenance, as well as additional training in the aviation industry in Norway.
“Over the past few years, Boeing has been active with Norwegian industry, which has demonstrated that they have a robust and highly capable defense sector that can support our business. The size, scope and strategic value of our collaboration opportunities reinforce our commitment to Norway and our promises of industry agreements” said Maria Laine, Boeing Vice President, International Strategic Partnerships.
“We are very pleased to expand our close cooperation with Boeing by including support for the Norwegian P-8 fleet, with the possibility of further expansion in the future. Collaboration with international platform suppliers is of strategic importance to Kongsberg. It ensures continuity and preparedness in Norway, and gives Kongsberg further export opportunities,” says Terje Bråthen, division director at Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace AS.
In June 2016, the Norwegian government would buy four new surveillance aircraft in its long-term defense plan; the P-8 was seen as the main option. In December 2016, the U.S. State Department approved the sale with congressional approval pending. On 29 March 2017, Norway signed a contract for five P-8As, to be delivered between 2022 and 2023. Boeing and Kongsberg’s collaboration extends 20 years with NATO’s fleet of AWACS aircraft and will be able to be lifted further through the P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft.