COPENHAGEN, June 9 (Xinhua) -- A majority in the Danish Parliament on Thursday approved the government's plan to buy 27 F-35 (Joint Strike Fighter) aircraft as the replacement for the nation's aging fleet of F-16s.
"Denmark should buy 27 F-35 fighter jets. It is a capacity that will replace the present F-16 fighter jets," said Danish Defense Minister Peter Christensen.
He said the number of F-35s is adequate to carry out the same tasks as the F-16s do today.
Denmark currently has a fleet of 30 F-16 fighter jets that have been in service since 1980, but all of them will be phased out by 2024.
The F-35s from American weapons producer Lockheed Martin, which are still in development, are expected to be ready by 2027.
The F-35 was chosen over Boeing's Super Hornet and the Eurofighter Typhoon, based on an evaluation report from Denmark's New Fighter Program Office.
Denmark has been a partner nation in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter development program since 1997, and the F-35 has long been regarded as the front-runner in the Danish fighter replacement program.
The 27 aircraft are expected to cost 20 billion Danish kroner and the total lifetime cost of the new fleet is estimated at 56.4 billion kroner, according to Christensen. (1 U.S. dollars = 6.53 Danish kroner)