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Saab opens Philippine office


JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft / CREDIT: Wikimedia / Manila Bulletin

JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft / CREDIT: Wikimedia / Manila Bulletin

By Roy C. Mabasa

Swedish Ambassador Harald Fries said Saab Group, a major defense and civilian security company, has just opened an office in the country.

“People here they associate Saab with cars but they no longer exist,” he noted. “It is now a global security company and they just opened up an office here in the Philippines.”

The Saab Group has been reported to be in the pole position to secure a deal to sell its JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft to the Philippine Air Force. Aside from air defense, the company could also offer coastal surveillance equipment and even submarines to the Philippines.

During a media roundtable held on the occasion of the 70th year of Sweden-Philippine Diplomatic Relations, Ambassador Fries said Swedish business is generally quite progressive when it comes to corporate social responsibility in terms of taking care of the environment,  as well as upholding labor and human rights.

Swedish companies such as clothing giant H&M, multinational networking and telecommunications equipment and services company Ericsson, and global customer experience specialist Transcom WorldWide AB are all “very advanced in nurturing good working conditions for these people that they hire.”

Fries disclosed that later this year, the Swedish embassy will invite Swedish companies who do good work in terms of social responsibility, to have an exchange with government agencies, labor unions, and Philippines companies.

“If the Swedish companies could show that giving emphasis to social responsibility and environment is not only the right thing to do but it also makes sense business wise for them,” he explained. “They see that consumers pay more attention to this, who offer good working conditions, who take care of the environment. These companies say it’s good for the business. That’s good to stimulate companies here to do the same.”

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  • dee

    This a good and positive development in terms of employment and possible alternative source of military and security materials and methodologies that PHL can tap besides US and Japan, the traditional source. The Swedish hardware are NATO compliant and therefore easier to shift or are compatible to US denominated materials and systems currently being used.

  • Arnel Amador


  • Shelf Room

    Its is really a good news if the Philippines DOD will inked at least 1 or 2 Squadron of JAS gripen 39C/D/E or the F Variant.

  • freedash22

    I’m all for the Gripen JAS-39E/F. It’s not the greatest fighter ever but it’s very capable and cost-effective and very capable for the price. A few of these is so much better than any other better fighter which we can’t afford.

  • EBR

    gogogo get this air craft

  • John

    It’s about time that we have our own MRF after more than a decade…Maybe 36 Jets will suffice…

  • I doubt the Philippines can afford anything from Sweden and I I doubt Sweden will sell Military gear to a country with questionable Human rights record

    • Noel Lection

      Ngeee! very positive bro.