During the G7 summit held from 19 to 21 May in Japan, US President Joe Biden gave permission for other countries to deliver F-16 fighter jets – manufactured by the U.S. company Lockheed Martin- to Ukraine. A “historic” decision, welcomed by Ukrainian President Zelensky, the delivery of these planes developed in the 1970s and currently used by 25 countries, had so far been blocked by Washington. If these deliveries become a reality, it would allow Kiev to replenish its air combat capabilities, after the loss of about 60 of the roughly 100 combat aircraft it had at the beginning of the Russian invasion.
It remains to be seen who will supply Ukraine with F-16s. As the producing country with the largest stockpile (936 active aircraft), the U.S. has however already pledged to take part in the training of Ukrainian pilots to use the F-16. As the data in our chart shows, after the Americans, it is Turkey that has the most F-16s (243 aircraft). Following them are Israel (224), Egypt (218), South Korea (167), Greece (153) and Taiwan (136 and 66 on order). Together with the United States, these countries own three-quarters of the world’s F-16 fleet. Other European countries also have several dozen F-16s in stock, such as Belgium (52), Poland (48), Denmark (43) and the Netherlands (29).
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