PH to spend P16B for new air assets
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine military is allocating a total of P16.3 billion for brand new air assets, including long range patrol aircrafts and anti-submaritine helicopters, to boost the country's maritime security capabilities.
The Department of National Defense (DND) invited bidders for the following projects:
- P5.976 billion for two brand new long range patrol aircrafts, including its sensors, sensors integration, mission support facilities and integrated logistics support (ILS) package for the Philippine Air Force (PAF)
- P5.405 billion for two anti-submarine helicopters with munitions, mission, essential equipment and ILS for the Philippine Navy
- P4.968 billion for 6 close air support aircraft with corresponding ILS for the Philippine Air Force
Public bidding will be conducted, using the pass-fail test.
The Philippine Air Force has always wanted these capabilities, especially the long range aircrafts, to be able to patrol the country's exclusive economic zones, said air force spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Enrico Canaya.
"Right now we have limited assets in conducting maritime patrol. These types of aircrafts have long endurance and they are more capable. We've always wanted these capability. It will be a welcome development. We are happy," he said.
The close air support aircrafts, on the other hand, will be an upgrade of the OV10 Bronco in the miltary's current inventory.
Bidding for the two anti-submarine helicopters for the Philippine Navy was announced earlier. These will be ship-based with mission essential equipment.
The funding for these projects will be drawn from the AFP Modernization Act Trust Fund and the Revised Modernization Program of 2012. – Rappler.com