Did you know the US wanted to Export the F-22 but It wasn’t sold Abroad Because no Other Country Helped to pay for Raptor’s Development?

Did you know the US wanted to Export the F-22 Raptor but It wasn’t sold Abroad Because no Other Country Helped to pay for its Development?

By Dario Leone
Mar 8 2020
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Initially, the F-22 Raptor was allowed to be exported because few countries were willing to help pay for the aircraft development, but never did. Then which prohibited “the sale of the F-22 advanced tactical fighter to any foreign government.”

In the mid-1990s, Lockheed Martin developed and built the F-22, an extremely advanced tactical fighter that combined stealth, integrated avionics and maneuverability. The F-22 (that descended from the YF-22, the Raptor’s technology demonstrator pictured in the main image of this post and which first flew in 1990) was developed because the U.S. needed an aircraft that could both: Compete against the back then developed Su-27 Flanker and the MiG-29 Fulcrum as well as replacing the F-15 Eagle as America’s front-line dominance fighter.

Several U.S. Aerospace/Electrical Companies decided to partner with Lockheed Martin and create what is today known as the F-22 Raptor.

Did you know the US wanted to Export the F-22 Raptor but It wasn’t sold Abroad Because no Other Country Helped to pay for its Development?
Manufacturers of the F-22

There were of course many other specialized companies that fabricated/constructed the very specific materials/avionics/pieces, but these companies have been defunct for some time now.

The F-22 Development cost was 66.7 Billion USD.

According to an interesting post appeared on Quora, only the U.S. government paid for the entire budget for the construction of the F-22 Raptor and since no other country at the time was willing to help pinch in to pay the tremendous amount of the final bill, they didn’t export it.

Did you know the US wanted to Export the F-22 Raptor but It wasn’t sold Abroad Because no Other Country Helped to pay for its Development?
This print is available in multiple sizes from AircraftProfilePrints.com – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. F-22A Raptor 192nd Fighter Wing, 149th Fighter Squadron, FF/04-4082 – Langley AFB, VA – 2014

The misleading part that most people seem to assume is that the F-22 Raptor had been banned from export. Initially, it was allowed to be exported because of the reason mentioned above, thus a few countries were willing to help pay, but never did.

Then Lockheed Martin decided to consider an export model, for the countries that were willing to obtain the aircraft, however, at the time, Congress enacted a law (H.R.2266 – Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 1998, Sec. 8117) which prohibited “approve or license the sale of the F-22 advanced tactical fighter to any foreign government.”

F-22 Model
This model is available from AirModels – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS.

Thus, the F-22 could have been exported if the interested country would’ve helped pay the bill before this enactment came to exist.

By contrast several countries helped with the development and payment of the F-35. Having several countries help with the Lightning II construction, makes the F-35 appropriate for export.

Did you know the US wanted to Export the F-22 Raptor but It wasn’t sold Abroad Because no Other Country Helped to pay for its Development?

Photo credit: U.S. Air Force


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Dario Leone

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.
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