Romanian Navy Nears Helicopter Decision

Romanian Navy Nears Helicopter Decision

The Romanian Navy is in the process of making its final decision on the procurement of three new naval helicopters, according to recent reports. The helicopters will be operated from the two Royal Navy Broadsword-class frigates that were purchased from the United Kingdom and are scheduled for delivery in 2005 and 2006.

The decision is expected to be made by the end of the year, and funding will be provided by the Romanian Army. The helicopters will probably be built in Romania by IAR, which also makes the IAR 330 Puma helicopter under license. Delivery of the first helicopter will probably be by the end of 2006.

The Eurocopter AS 565 Cougar, Augusta Westland EH-101 and NH Industries NH-90 are thought to be the leading candidates for the program. Although the initial order is only for three units, the Romanian Navy will need additional units for its future surface combatant program that will probably start in the next decade.

Copyright Navy League of the United States Oct 2004

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