> our title:

Belgium Selects Predator-B Unmanned Aircraft

> original title:

Belgium Selects Predator-B Unmanned Aircraft

(Source: Scramble Magazine; posted March 25, 2018)

The Belgian MoD selected (selected, not purchased!) the General Atomics Predator B for the Belgian Air Component (Belgian Air Force) medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aircraft system (UAS) requirement.

The Belgium Minister of Defense, Steven Vandeput, confirmed this in some Belgium newspapers while interviewed regarding issues of the UAS purchase and F-16 replacement programmes.

The Predator B programme will cost the Belgium tax payer USD 278 million and was chosen over two Israeli companies that tried to win the order. The Air Component wants to get up to four MALE UAS - optionally armed - between 2021-2025 as a replacement of thirteen Hunter UAS that were acquired from Israel in 2002.

The American platform was the only one selected at the end of the Request for Information because of the difficulties of obtaining a European certificate for the Israeli candidates.

The Belgian Government has not yet made a decision on the actual purchase of the US drones. The programme still could be frozen or even cancelled.