PHL’s first anti-submarine helicopter still undergoing maker’s trials

The Philippines first anti-submarine helicopter, AW159 Wildcat anti-submarine warfare helicopter manufactured by Leonardo, formerly AgustaWestland, is on tract for its first quarter 2019 delivery.

“Accordingly, it will arrive within the first quarter of next year. Manufacturer’s trials are still being done,” Navy spokesperson Commander Jonathan Zata told Philippine News Agency.

The contract for the two ASW helicopters was signed March 2016 under Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Modernization Program First Horizon.

The contract is worth PHP5.4 billion and includes munition, mission essential equipment, and integrated logistic support.

Early this month, Department of National Defense (DND) spokesperson Arsenio Andolong confirmed the first test flight of the said helicopter.

“As confirmed by the Commander Naval Air Group (CNAG), the AW-159 has just started initial test flight as part of the manufacturer’s trial. It is still scheduled for a series of test flights before scheduling its handover to the Philippines,” Andolong said.

“According as well to CNAG, the flight signals the completion of the first unit,” Andolong added.