Italian defence company Finmeccanica will finalise a multi-billion dollar contract from Kuwait for 28 Eurofighter jets on Tuesday, two sources close to the deal told Reuters on Monday. Kuwait signed a memorandum of understanding in September to buy the planes, but efforts to close the deal have hit repeated snags and a third source urged continued caution.
Finmeccanica declined to comment. The 20-year contract is expected to be worth between 7 billion and 8 billion euros ($8 billion-$9.1 billion), with Finmeccanica's share seen at roughly half of the total.
The rest is in the hands of a group of companies in the Eurofighter consortium, including planemaker Airbus and Britain's BAE Systems. Finmeccanica Chief Executive Officer Mauro Moretti said in March that the state-owned conglomerate was in the final stages of discussion with Kuwait over the deal and hoped "to conclude in a short period".
Kuwait's parliament recently approved a law allowing the government to pay an advance of some 150 million dinars ($500 million) for the contract. Delays in the multi-billion-euro contract have put pressure on Finmeccanica shares, but the stock was up 2.45 pct on Monday amid speculation it was ready to be finalised.