F-22 Raptor loss is F-15EX gain in latest US budget request

The US military looks set to be delivered a mix blessing in the US President’s 2023 financial year defence budget request, with cuts to existing platform numbers while new platforms are brought online.

Released on March 28, which coincidently coincided with Canada’s decision to select the F-35A as its preferred fighter to replace the ageing CF-18 Hornets, the President’s Fiscal Year 2023 (FY2023) budget requested $773bn for the Department of Defense (DOD), with nearly $56.6bn for air power platforms and related systems.

F-22 in flight
The latest defence budget request proposes a reduction of more than 30 F-22 Raptor fighters, which would leave around 150 left in service. USAF/Senior Airman Rhonda Smith

The FY2023 DOD budget request represented a $30.7bn, or 4.1% increase, from the FY2021 enacted amount.

Key air programmes that will benefit from the budget, if passed by Congress, include $5bn for the B-21 Long Range Strike Bomber, currently being developed by Northrop Grumman, and $1bn for the nuclear-armed air-launched Long-Range Stand-Off (LRSO) missile under development with Raytheon.

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