Romania to provide high quality training environment for Romanian and allied pilots (DefMin in Toledo)

A Letter of Intent between the Ministry of National Defense of Romania, the Ministry of Defense of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Lockheed Martin Company regarding the F-16 Training Center in Romania was signed Tuesday by the minister of National Defense, Angel Tilvar, in the context of his participation in the Informal Meeting of Defence ministers of the European Union, held in Toledo, Spain.

“Through this center, Romania is committed to providing a high-quality training environment, with access to technical resources and state-of-the-art know-how not only for Romanian pilots, but also for those from allied and partner states, including Ukraine,” the minister of National Defense said, according to a press release of the Ministry of Defense.

In order to implement this project, the Royal Dutch Air Force will contribute by deploying some F-16 aircraft in the 86th Lieutenant Aviator Gheorghe Mociornita Air Base, thus facilitating the effective training of Romanian pilots. Also, Lockheed Martin Company will provide technical support of the highest level, through flight instructors and technical-engineering staff. Through this solid cooperation, a complex preparation is ensured, in accordance with international standards, MApN mentions.

The F-16 Training Center at the 86th Air Base will become a relevant regional center, a fact already consolidated by the signing of the Joint Declaration at the NATO Summit in Vilnius, in July 2023. Through this agreement, Romania joins other allied nations, such as Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Sweden and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, in support of the training of Ukrainian pilots for the future use of F-16 aircraft.

“I express hope that the F-16 Training Center in Romania will demonstrate its strategic importance, which aims to meet the complex security requirements of Romania, its allies and partners in the region. This joint effort strengthens Romania’s position as a regional leader in training F-16 pilots, contributing to the cohesion of alliances, demonstrating unity and strengthening the Euro-Atlantic defense,” minister Angel Tilvar said.

According to MApN, this project not only underlines Romania’s commitment to collective security, but also reflects the solid support given to our partners. Through the F-16 Training Center, Romania is consolidating its role as a security provider, contributing substantially to supporting Ukraine’s capabilities within the collective efforts for stability and security.