TAIPEI (The China Post) – Taiwan Air Force was poised to purchase 66 F-16 Viper fighter jets from the U.S. government in order to upgrade its old Dassault Mirage 2000, according to various sources.

外傳空軍原本打算向美國購買66架F-16V戰機,以便日後汰換無法性能升級的幻象2000戰機。

The Republic of China (Taiwan) Air Force said on Jan. 4 that it hadn’t received any quotation yet, amid reports that the manufacturer, Lockheed Martin, asked a hefty NT$390 billion for the purchase, thus forcing the military to look for other options.

不過,傳出F-16V製造商洛克希德馬丁公司獅子大開口,開出3900億元高額報價,空軍考慮另尋戰機來源。空軍今(4)日則是表示,目前尚未接獲報價資訊。

Chinese-language media reported that Lockheed Martin asked for NT$390 billion for the sale, almost twice the original budget of NT$200 billion.

媒體報導,洛克希德馬丁公司獅子大開口,開出3900億元的報價,比空軍預定的2000億多出近一倍。

If the company is not willing to lower its price, sources said that the deal might just be cancelled. In this eventuality, the Air Force might opt for old F-15 or F-18, or just seek another supplier.

空軍官員透露,如果洛馬原廠不願讓步,我方不排除放棄新購F-16V,改向美軍採購或租賃中古F-15或F-18,甚至是另尋來源。

The Air Force Command Headquarters said that the purchase of military weapons and equipment involves several aspects, including the state of the enemy and future combat demands. “As long as the aircraft type fits our need of defense, it will be taken into our operational considerations,” the air force said.

空軍司令部表示,空軍各式武器裝備籌購,係盱衡當前敵情及未來作戰需求綜合考量,凡符合我防衛作戰之機型,均納入聯合戰力規劃選項。

The Air Force Command Headquarters also pointed out that the purchase of major weapons and equipment is conducted from government to government. As for the latest purchase, there isn’t an official quotation yet, so the military urged the media not to over speculate on this issue and cause confusion and misunderstandings.

空軍司令部指出,重大武器裝備籌購係採軍售管道方式進行,為政府部門對政府部門間之事務,有關新式戰機籌購,尚無任何官方報價資訊,籲請媒體勿做臆測性報導,以免混淆視聽,造成誤解。

Translated by Nora Chang