The US Air Force has awarded Textron Aviation Defense a $12.5 million contract for early work on the delivery of eight T-6C Texan II military training aircraft to Tunisia.
According to a Pentagon contract announcement, the contract provides for the procurement of long lead production items and spares to support delivery of eight T-6Cs in 2022.
Textron is also expected to complete a site survey in Tunisia as part of the contract, which has a completion date of October 2022.
The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center awarded the contract to Textron after the US State Department cleared a possible sale of twelve Texan trainers to Tunisia for an estimated $234 million in 2019.
Tunisia is buying the T-6C to replace its aging Aero Vodochody L-59T Super Albatross advanced trainer and light attack aircraft and to continue training pilots to support its counter-terrorism and border security missions.
In February 2020, the African country also received US approval to buy AT-6C Wolverine light attack aircraft. The planned purchase is part of Tunisia’s effort to revitalize its air force fleet, which, in addition to the Super Albatross, consists of outdated Marchetti SF.260 trainers and a handful of F-5 fighters.