Department of National Defense

Philippines pushes through with purchase of 3 new C-130 planes

Bea Cupin

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Philippines pushes through with purchase of 3 new C-130 planes

C130s. President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. leads the inspection of C130T planes on March 31, 2023.

Presidential Communications Office

The DND says the new planes would 'provide our Air Force with greater operational flexibility'

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine defense department announced on Tuesday, October 17, that it was pushing through with a previous plan to purchase three new C-130J-C3 Super Hercules planes for the Philippine Air Force. 

The three aircraft are due for delivery in July 2026, October 2026, and January 2027, said the Department of National Defense (DND).

In a release on Tuesday, October 17, DND spokesperson Director Arsenio Andolong said the purchase would “provide our Air Force with greater operational flexibility.” 

The C-130J-30, according to maker Lockheed Martin, is a “stretch version” of the C-130J. “The C-130J-30 adds 15 feet to the fuselage, increasing usable space (two more pallets of equipment) in the cargo compartment,” reads the description of the aircraft. 

The country’s Air Force operates only a handful of C-130s. As of posting, the DND has not replied to inquiries on how much the 3 new C-130s would cost.

“The PAF welcomes this development and we look forward to the added capability that these platforms will bring. These C130s will surely boost our airlift capability to support military operations and other national development efforts to include relief operations during times of disasters and calamities,” said the Philippine Air Force in a separate statement. –

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Bea Cupin

Bea is a senior multimedia reporter who covers national politics. She's been a journalist since 2011 and has written about Congress, the national police, and the Liberal Party for Rappler.