Interest in fighter acquisitions is bubbling in Southeast Asia, even if the timing of program launches is unclear. Indonesia wants more aircraft of types that it has in service, while the Philippines aims to return to fighter operation. Thailand is expected to make a purchase during the decade, though not imminently, while Malaysia is focusing on light combat aircraft (LCA).
In each of these countries, budgeting allocations tend to be hard to predict, and major military acquisitions are often talked about long before they come to fruition—with much chopping and changing along the way. Still, prospects of fighter orders in Southeast Asia are supported by the aging of current fleets, the rising threat of China and economic growth rates generally stronger than those of developed countries.
Singapore, which tends to say little but follows through on what it does say, has begun the process of acquiring its next fighter type, the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning.
Indonesia should be next in placing an order, and it has decided on the Lockheed Martin F-16.
The F-16V is a candidate for the Philippines’ plan to restore the fighter capability it lost when it retired its last F-5 in 2005. The Philippine Air Force has planned to buy aircraft in this multirole fighter program in the next few years. The government has not confirmed the scale of the acquisition, however.
The Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) has had to give up plans for 18 fighters to replace F-5s and Mikoyan MiG-29s now in storage; it now does not expect the government to order fighters within about the next 10 years.
The Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) would like to buy more Gripen C/Ds to add to the ones it has in service, but has instead embarked on an upgrade of F-5E/Fs that includes modern radars and air-to-air missiles.
这条消息是Bradley Perrett在Aviation Week & Space Technology发表文章的摘要。欲详细了解这些国家的战斗机显著及未来计划，请阅读全文。