DND to open bids for purchase of 6 close air support aircraft
MANILA, Philippines — The military will be purchasing six close air support aircraft worth P4.9 billion as part of its continuing modernization program.
The Department of National Defense has set the bid opening on Monday, Oct. 12, for the acquisition, which was announced in May but was put on hold pending President Aquino’s approval.
Six foreign firms signified their interest to bid for the close air support acquisition project, which has an allocated budget of P4,968,000,000.
The firms, which bought bid documents were: Brazillian aircraft manufacturer Embraer Asia Pacific; United States-based Beechcraft Defense Company and IOMAX USA Inc.; Korea Aerospace Industries; European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company – Construcciones Aeronautics SA (EADS-CASA) Airbus Defense and Space; and Israeli defense contractor Elbit Systems.
The bid opening will be held at the DND in Camp Aguinaldo at 10 a.m. of October 12, with the bid documents costing P75,000 each.
The military is planning to complement its current Rockwell OV-10 “Bronco” turboprop attack planes operated by the Philippine Air Force with the six new close air support aircraft.
Such aircraft are designed to provide air support to infantry and naval units in contact with the enemy.
The DND’s technical specifications require aircraft with dual tandem seating and with a carrying capacity of at least 3,000 lbs with five hard points. The aircraft must also have two .50 caliber guns built-in or through pods.
The winning bidder will be required to deliver the six aircraft within 540 calendar days
The purchase is one of several contracts earlier put on hold pending the President’s go signal.
The other projects were the purchase of two Navy frigates worth P18 billion, two long range patrol aircraft worth P5.9 billion and three air surveillance radars worth P2.68 billion.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines currently has an P85.3-billion budget for its modernization program mandated by law, to be carried out from 2013 to 2017. SFM
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