LA PAZ – July 7, 2019 – Recently, Bolivian President Evo Morales has stated that the country’s Air Force must replace US T-33 training fighters with Russian Yak-130 fighters.
The US aircraft T-33 were withdrawn from service in 2018 and since then, Morales has shown interest in Russian aircraft, Military Watch portal indidcated.
“There is a strong interest in the purchase of Russian military equipment, including aircraft,” said Evo Morales, noting that a joint commission would be working and that the possible transfer of technology could yield good results.
After the withdrawal of the US aircraft, the Bolivian pilots demanded that the replacement be made by Russian aircraft, as there is a great reliance on Russian military equipment by the country’s military.
The Yak-130 entered service in 2010 and the aircraft has been widely exported as a training hunt for modern aircraft such as the Su-30, and can also be used as a combat fighter.
The aircraft can carry a payload of up to 3,000 kilograms, including guided munitions, as well as the ability to operate in electronic wars .
Due to the low Bolivian budget, the country is looking for a more viable option and the Yak-130, because it has high capacities and affordable value, enters the list of Bolivian acquisitions.
In addition, several other Latin American states have shown interest in Russian jets. It is worth mentioning that Venezuela currently has a fleet of 23 Su-30MK2 air superiority fighters and is planning to acquire other high-level fighters.
Another important point is that Bolivia maintains a good relationship with Venezuela and the deployment of Russian aircraft containing the same subsystems and ammunition could facilitate closer ties between the two countries’ air forces.
With that, Bolivia would be raising its air capacity as a way to improve the country’s sovereignty and provide a better service to the Bolivian people, as Evo Morales previously said.