23 Mar 17. Japan to deliver first two TC-90 trainer aircraft to the Philippines. Japan will transfer the first two of five Beechcraft TC-90 King Air advanced trainer aircraft to the Philippines on 27 March, with the remaining three aircraft set to be delivered by the end of 2017, the Tokyo-based Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics Agency said in a statement on 21 March.
The Philippine Navy (PN) is leasing the TC-90s from the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) to boost its maritime security capabilities.
Besides the delivery of the aircraft, the deal, which was signed during the administration of former Philippine president Benigno Aquino III, includes pilot training and aircraft maintenance support.
Jane’s reported in March 2016 that the TC-90s will not be weaponised and are expected to feature only basic surveillance systems, but represent one of Japan’s first programmes to transfer military aircraft since the country lifted its defence export ban in 2014. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
23 Mar 17. LIMA 2017: RUAG pursues strong MRO growth in Southeast Asia. Swiss group RUAG has outlined strong prospects for growth for its aerospace maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) business in Southeast Asia.
David Jones, the general manager of RUAG Aviation’s Malaysia subsidiary, said that while the domestic market is the company’s priority over the coming year there are increasing opportunities for expansion in the wider region.
RUAG Aviation Malaysia was incorporated in 2011 in partnership with local company Prima Elite Technology. The investment split of RUAG Aviation Malaysia is 65:35, with the Swiss firm holding the larger share.
The RUAG subsidiary opened a new MRO facility in November in Subang, in the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur, next to a number of airframe MRO operators. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
23 Mar 17. Poland rules out used F-16 purchase. Poland has ruled out the purchase of used F-16A/B multirole combat aircraft to replace Soviet era fighter aircraft inventories on the grounds of cost, Deputy Minister of National Defence Bartosz Kownacki said on 22 March. He said that the decision had been reached following analysis that showed “that it is not a legitimate direction”, adding that “you could say that it would cost more than buying [new aircraft] and therefore we will not take this path”.
Kownacki was speaking after the Polish Ministry of National Defence began analysis at the start of this year on options around the possible purchase of 50-100 aircraft to replace the Polish Air Force’s aging Sukhoi Su-22 strike aircraft and Mikoyan MiG-29 fighter aircraft. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
23 Mar 17. US delivers four more refurbished F-16s to Indonesia. The United States has delivered four more refurbished Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon combat aircraft to the Indonesian Air Force (Tentara Nasional Indonesia-Angkatan Udara: TNI-AU). The move is part of a USD700m deal signed in 2012 to supply the Southeast Asian country with 24 ex-US Air Force F-16C/D fighters upgraded from Block 25 to Block 52 standard by the end of 2017. The F-16s involved had been originally flown by US Air Force (USAF) and Air National Guard units, but were decommissioned and stored for several years, said the USAF in a statement on 17 March. “Each aircraft has received a myriad of new and upgraded components to include a new set of wings, horizontal stabilisers, and landing gear, along with numerous structural and avionics capability enhancements,” said the USAF. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
23 Mar 17. LIMA 2017: Myanmar is the latest Yak-130 export customer, confirm Russian officials. Myanmar has taken delivery of an initial batch of three Yakovlev Yak-130 ‘Mitten’ advanced jet trainer/light-attack aircraft from Russia, senior Russian defence industry officials told Jane’s at the LIMA 2017 exhibition in Langkawi.
Officials would not confirm how many Yak-130 aircraft have been ordered by Myanmar but said that while the first batch was delivered in lat