Fri. Jun 25th, 2021

The Department of National Defense (DND) on Tuesday announced that the first two out of the six T129B “ATAK” helicopters acquired by the Philippines from Turkey will be delivered in September.

(Photo Courtesy: Aviation International News)

“Based on latest developments, we are expecting the first two units of T129 attack helicopters for the Philippine Air Force (PAF) to be delivered this September,” said DND spokesperson Arsenio Andolong in a statement.

These helicopters will be acquired for a total contract price of US$269,388,862 (around PHP12.9 billion) from Turkish Aerospace Industries through a government-to-government mode of procurement pursuant to Republic Act 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act.

Another two units are expected to be delivered by February 2022 and another two in February 2023, which will complete the order.

The T129 is a twin-engine, tandem seat, multi-role, all-weather attack helicopter based on the Agusta A129 Mangusta platform and is designed for advanced attack and reconnaissance missions in hot and high environments and rough geography in both day and night conditions.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana earlier said the PAF is more interested in acquiring the T129B for its attack helicopter program. He signed the contract for the acquisition of the Turkish attack helicopters in July last year.The PAF is looking to acquire dedicated but affordable attack helicopters to beef up its fleet of lightly-armed helicopters like the MG-520 and AW-109E which are being used for counter-terror and ground support missions. SOVEREIGNPH

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