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Lockheed Martin

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beat out two competitors for a contract to supply 48 F-16 fighter jets to the Polish government. The pact is worth $3.5 billion, making it one of the biggest European military procurements ever.

Lockheed beat out a joint bid from Sweden's

Saab

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and Britain's

BAE Systems

, and a bid from France's

Daussalt

.

Poland, which became a NATO member in 1999, will receive pilot training and $3.8 billion in financing for the fighters from the U.S. government.