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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Thursday, 20.09.2018, 21:53

Latvian government approves purchase of four Black Hawk helicopters

BC, Riga, 11.09.2018.Print version
The Cabinet of Ministers of Latvia approved the planned purchase of four Black Hawk helicopters for 175 mln euros from the United States, informs LETA.

In order to provide the financing necessary for the replacement of the medium-lift helicopters and start the purchase process, the Cabinet of Ministers decided to increase the Defense Ministry’s long-term liabilities for 2023 and 2024 by around 80 mln euros.


The helicopters will be purchased in accordance with the US Foreign Military Financing (FMF) program by signing an intergovernmental agreement with the US for purchase of four new medium-lift utility helicopters UH-60M Black Hawk.


After the signing of intergovernmental agreement, National Armed Forces will receive rotorcraft, associated equipment and installation services, training of pilots, crew members and technical personnel, spare parts and maintenance, full technical documentation and software licenses. The deal will possibly be co-financed by the US from its support programs.


The Latvian National Armed Forces (NAF) might receive the first helicopters in 2021.

“Replacement of helicopters is crucial. Rotorcraft will not only be used for different military purposes, it will also be utilized during civilian operations, serving the public needs,” said Latvian Defense Minister Raimonds Bergmanis (Greens/Farmers).


UH-60M is the third generation Black Hawk helicopter introduced by the US Armed Forces 11 years ago. US Armed Forces are currently gradually implementing full transition to the new type of Black Hawk helicopters. In comparison with previous generation rotorcraft UH-60L, UH-60M has more powerful engine, better seats and improved survivability. Instruments are fully digitalized and flight planning and control has been simplified. UH-60M has new, composite blades and integrated control system, which gives constant updates on helicopter’s performance.

 






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