A Swedish manufacturer Saab's Gripen F fighter jet flies during a 2012 flight demonstration of the Swiss Air Force over Axalp in the Bernese Oberland. The Czech government on Wednesday renewed its lease on 14 Swedish fighter jets until 2027. (Fabrice Coffrini / AFP/Getty Images)
PRAGUE — The Czech government on Wednesday renewed its lease on 14 Swedish fighter jets until 2027, its defense minister said.
The Czech army has been using the Gripen one- and two-seaters since 2005 under a 10-year contract worth around 20 billion koruna (€730 million, $1 billion).
“From now on Prague will pay an annual 1.7 billion koruna,” Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky said of the lease that kicks in next year.
He added that the aircraft would be upgraded under the contract. Sweden would also train 25 Czech pilots and 90 technicians.
A total of 166 Gripen fighters are used around the world, including 100 in Sweden, according to data from Swedish manufacturer Saab.