U.S. State Dept approves potential sale of F-35 fighters, munitions to Germany

Two U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II aircraft arrive in Estonia
Two U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II aircraft assigned to the 34th Fighter Squadron at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, arrive at Amari Air Base, Estonia, February 24, 2022. U.S. Air Force/Handout via REUTERS

WASHINGTON, July 28 (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department approved a possible foreign military sale to Germany of F-35 fighter jets, munitions and related equipment for an estimated cost of $8.4 billion, the Pentagon said on Thursday.

The potential deal for the advanced stealth fighter came after German Chancellor Olaf Scholz pledged an upgrade to his country's military following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The principle contractors for the deal include Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N), Boeing Co (BA.N) and Raytheon Technologies Corp (RTX.N), the Pentagon said.

The Pentagon's Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress of the possible sale on Thursday.

Despite approval by the State Department, the notification does not indicate a contract has been signed or that negotiations have concluded.

The notice of a potential sale is required by law.

Germany said in March it would buy 35 U.S. F-35 fighter jets to replace its aging Tornado. read more

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Washington; Editing by Tim Ahmann and Jonathan Oatis

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