AFP submits updated wish list of equipment to Marcos for approval
The Armed Forces of the Philippines has updated its military acquisition plan in line with its ongoing equipment modernization program and submitted it for approval to President Marcos.
The AFP wish list had to be updated after several multiphase projects totaling almost P300 billion for Horizon 2—the second in the three-phase military capability upgrade program covering the years 2018 to 2022—were stalled due to funding issues.
Horizon 3, or the final phase that started this year and would run until 2028, consists of equipment geared for external defense. But the AFP had to review its planned acquisitions and create a new list after a backlog in the previous stages.
“We just submitted the list and it was already presented. Some of those [equipment on the] Horizon 1 and 2 [list] are obsolete already because it was planned maybe 10 years ago [and] they are no longer needed because the situation has changed. So we came up with a new list. However, there are complementary projects that need to be carried over,” AFP chief Gen. Andres Centino told reporters on the sidelines of his visit to Balabac Island on Wednesday.
“[We need] quite a considerable amount of resources … We’re hopeful that there will be funding for this,” he said.
The list of equipment under the updated Horizon 3 plan includes multirole fighters, radars, frigates, missile systems and rescue helicopters worth an estimated P500 billion.
The Department of National Defense under the Marcos administration has yet to sign a big-ticket military procurement project that will boost its modernization.
Centino said some of their capability upgrade projects had to be canceled or shelved due to many factors, including the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The government had other priorities to address and we are sensitive to that also and we wouldn’t insist on that,” he said.