Boeing today delivered Kuwait’s first C-17 Globemaster III airlifter, an aircraft that will expand the Kuwait Air Force’s capabilities in military and civilian operations, including humanitarian aid and disaster relief.
“The C-17 meets the unique airlift requirements of the Kuwait Air Force,” said Col. Abdullah Al Foudari, Deputy Commander Kuwait Air Force. “With this airlifter we can more effectively participate in the operations we choose, transporting large payloads across long distances, flying at high altitudes in hot climates such as ours, and landing on short, unpaved runways.”
A custom paint design distinguishes the Kuwait C-17 from the 259 others that have been delivered to customers around the world.
“When this C-17 arrives to deliver humanitarian aid or disaster relief anywhere in the world, people in need will know that the aid came from Kuwait,” said Col. Abdullah.
“We welcome Kuwait to the global C-17 fleet with the knowledge that this aircraft elevates the Kuwait Air Force’s airlift capabilities and also further strengthens Boeing’s relationship with Kuwait,” said Nan Bouchard, vice president and C-17 program manager. “We will support this C-17 long after today’s delivery.”
Boeing will support Kuwait’s C-17 fleet through the C-17 Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Program, a proven multinational Performance-Based Logistics program.
Boeing has delivered 260 C-17s, including 223 to the U.S. Air Force, and a total of 37 to Kuwait, Australia, Canada, India, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the 12-member Strategic Airlift Capability initiative of NATO and Partnership for Peace nations.
Kuwait is the third Middle Eastern nation to buy C-17s and there are talks for Kuwait to consider a second airframe.
Despite strong international interest, Boeing did not receive enough orders to protect the C-17 production line beyond 2015. Officials announced in September that it will end production next year, one week after Boeing handed over its 223rd and final C-17 to the U.S. Air Force in Charleston, S.C.
The pending closure will affect 20,000 people nationally, including 2,200 people in Long Beach and Huntington Beach, Calif., and thousands more in all of its more than 650 suppliers in 44 states.
From a Boeing news release and the Long Beach Press Telegram