Officials from Poland PZL Mielec, owned by Sikorsky – A Lockheed Martin Company, are reportedly in the Philippines.
MaxDefense Philippines said it received first hand information that officials from Poland’s Sikorsky-PZL Mielec are in the Philippines to finalize negotiations with the Department of National Defense (DND) on the acquisition of 16 S-70i Black Hawk helicopters for the Philippine Air Force (PAF)’s Combat Utility Helicopter (CUH) acquisition project.
DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana confirmed during Senate plenary discussion on January 16 regarding DND’s 2019 budget that they are acquiring Black Hawk helicopters for the PAF.
“Yes senator, we are acquiring the Black Hawk helicopter. This is a product of Lockheed Martin that is being made in Poland,” Secretary Lorenzana said when asked by Senator JV Ejercito to confirm the said acquisition.
Lorenzana also+ explained that the Black Hawks will be built in Poland but will be certified by Lockheed Martin Sikorsky.
The defense chief also noted that training of PAF pilots will be conducted in United States.
Lorenzana added that PAF wants delivery to start in six months after the contract signing. “According to the manufacturer, they can produce the whole lot in two years time, but what our Air Force want is once the contract is signed they want deliveries in the next six months – even just couple of choppers to be delivered, maybe monthly thereafter until the whole lot is delivered,” he said.