During a press conference held on 28 February and reported broadly by the Polish media, the head of the Polish MoD, Mariusz Błaszczak, placed a major emphasis on acquisition of the new fighter aircraft for the Polish Air Force.
The main argument used by the Polish official, when justifying the procurement, was the number of incidents and reduced reliability of the post-soviet inventory of the Polish military aviation (MiG-29 and Su-22 aircraft types).
The conference concerned the introduction of a new Technical Modernization Plan, that would cover the period between 2017 and 2026. The document outlines the modernization effort that is to be undertaken by the MoD over the term in question.
Błaszczak suggested that, within the framework of the newly adopted technical modernization plan, Harpia program is a priority. The Polish official emphasized the role that 5th generation airframes play in the structure of the modern military – they act as a force multiplier. And this has been the role assigned to them by Błaszczak during his speech – the new jets are to complement the F-16s. Given that the only 5-generation aircraft available on the market now is the F-35, the Polish official has been probably referring to the Lockheed Martin’s latest platform.
Overall, the value of the new Technical Modernization Plan issued by the MoD is contained in an amount of PLN 185 billion (49B USD), which means that the amount is 45 billion zlotys (12B USD) higher than in case of the preceding document.