Photo: @frankcrebas on Instagram
The sale of US F-35 fighter jets to the UAE has been halted by the Biden administration Photo: @frankcrebas on Instagram

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program can expect a new member to be joining, according to reports on Sunday, after Lockheed Martin’s fifth-generation fighter apparently beat out its European competition.

Belgium has opted to acquire 34 of Lockheed’s F-35 stealth jets instead of Eurofighter Typhoons, which are manufactured by a consortium of Airbus, BAE Systems and Leonardo.

Local Belgian media outlets, including La Libre, reported the expected deal, which will come with a price tag of €3.5 billion (US$4 billion).

According to La Libre, the decision will come as no surprise, as the F-35 has been the strong favorite among government officials. One source said Lockheed’s offering was “much cheaper and more efficient” than the Eurofighter.

The final announcement of the deal may include other major purchases such as of drones and armored vehicles.