MARIETTA, Ga. --- The government of Tunisia has signed a contract with Lockheed Martin for the purchase of two C-130J Super Hercules airlifters with an initial three years of logistics support. Tunisia's new C130Js, scheduled to be delivered in 2013 and 2014, will be the longer fuselage or "stretched" variant of the C-130J.
A contract signing ceremony took place at the Tunisian Ministry of National Defense (MND) in Tunis last month. During the ceremony, Abdellatif Chebbi, Tunisia MND chief of Cabinet, conveyed his appreciation for the successful conclusion of the negotiations and praised the capabilities and flexibility of the C-130J-30 aircraft. In addition, Dennys Plessas, Lockheed Martin regional vice president of Business Development, welcomed the Tunisian Air Force to the growing worldwide Super Hercules family.
"Tunisia is the 12th country to select the C-130J Super Hercules," said Jim Grant, Lockheed Martin vice president of business development for Air Mobility. "More and more, as countries recognize and appreciate the proven qualities of this tremendously flexible platform, we are seeing it become the preferred airlift option."
Tunisia currently operates a fleet of C-130Hs and C-130Bs, first purchased in the mid-1980s. The new C-130Js will support Tunisian operations across the mission spectrum, including relief efforts around the world, firefighting and traditional airlift sorties.
Other nations which are operating, or have ordered, the C-130J include Australia, Canada, Denmark, India, Iraq, Italy, Norway, Oman, Qatar, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The C-130J has become the standard by which all other airlift is measured in terms of availability, flexibility and reliability. C-130Js are currently deployed in two combat theaters and are operating at a very high tempo efficiently and reliably. In non-combat, but equally harsh environments, the C-130Js are often now the first to support humanitarian and disaster relief efforts.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation reported 2009 sales of $45.2 billion.