An additional two Lockheed C-130 “Hercules” cargo aircraft will be added to the Philippine Air Force’s (PAF) existing fleet of five that is now being utilized to transport medical supplies and personnel tasked to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.
A four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft designed and built originally by Lockheed, now known as Lockheed Martin, the C-130 is capable of using unprepared runways for takeoffs and landings. More so, it was originally designed as a troop, medical evacuation, and cargo transport aircraft.
“Based on our current status reports, one of the C-130s is expected to arrive this month (July) while the other one will arrive before the end of the year. Both have no specific (arrival) dates yet,” Department of National Defense (DND) spokesperson Arsenio Andolong said.
“Cost is PHP2.5 billion. They (C-130s were) co-financed by the Philippines (who contributed PHP1.6 billion) and the US through FMF (Foreign Military Financing) program worth (PHP900 million),” Andolong added.
The US FMF program provides grants and loans for the acquisition of US defense equipment, services, and training. (PNA)