Two more companies dropped out of the US Air Force's (USAF's) $16,3 billion T-X trainer aircraft programme. Rayhteon, who partnered with Leonardo for the T-X trainers which is to replace T-38 Talons in inventory, announced its withdrawal from the programme on 25 January. Following Raytheon's drop out, Northrop Grumman ve BAE Systems announced on 1 February that they no longer participate in the T-X programme. Thus, bidding for a US project for the first time Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) fell into first five competitors of its own accord.
The USAF's Chief of Staff General David Goldfein told reporters during a 7 February meeting that the latest developments were not at all surprising and the programme continued in accordance with expectations.
Boeing-Saab, Lockheed Martin-Korea Aerospace Industries, Leonardo, Stavatti Aerospace and Sierra Nevada Corparation-TUSAŞ/TAI will place offers for the T-X training aircraft tender.