DND signs P5.36-B anti-submarine helicopter deal

Patricia Lourdes Viray (Philstar.com) - April 1, 2016 - 3:00am

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Defense signed a contract worth P5.36 billion for the acquisition of anti-submarine helicopters for the Philippine Navy.

Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and AgustaWestland Limited Senior Vice President Stefano Bortoli on Tuesday inked the deal for two AW-159 anti-submarine helicopters.

"After more than four decades of aspiring to improve its capability, our Navy has found optimism in this anticipated acquisition of a new state of the art equipment and weaponry to address the requirements of anti sub-surface naval operations," Gazmin said.

The helicopters are expected to be delivered within 900 days after the signing of the notice to proceed.

The DND allotted P5.4 billion for the contract where AgustaWestland Limited emerged as the single calculated bidder.

"With the eventual availability and utilization of these new air assets, our navy can conduct naval operations with a high degree of confidence and reliability," the Defense chief said.

Defense Undersecretary Fernando Manalo earlier revealed that many countries had offered to sell military equipment to the country for the military's modernization program.

The military recently acquired new assets such as the South Korean-made FA-50PHs, Bell 205 combat utility helicopters, Airbus Military C-295 transport aircraft, new M-4 rifles and refurbished armored personnel carriers.

RELATED: Philippines mulls need for submarine forces amid sea row

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