Australia has decided to replace European helicopters with American Black Hawk helicopters. The announcement comes less than three months after the contract for French submarines was canceled by Australia.
According to information reported by Agence France-Presse, the Australian government has informed Airbus of its readiness to replace its helicopters of European origin with American Black Hawk helicopters. Australians say they are disappointed with the performance of the MRH90 Taipan, the Australian version of the NH90, a European twin-turbocharged attack helicopter intended for military transport.
Quoted from the newspaper AustralianAustralian Prime Minister Scott Morrison justified the government’s decision stating that “the Taipans have not achieved their goals”. “We want to make sure that our armed forces have the best possible equipment to defend this country and that Black Hawk helicopters are the best,” he added.
“We are disappointed with this announcement, but we remain committed to fully supporting the MRH90 fleet in service in Australia, and our important presence, more broadly, in the country,” an Airbus spokesperson told AFP.
4.4 billion euros contract
Originally built in Australia – designed by Airbus and operated by the Australian Army and Navy – the MRH90 has faced numerous technical issues since entering service in 2005 that delayed its full capacity for years. according to AustralianThe Australian government has decided to withdraw the entire Taipan fleet from service until 2037, replacing it with Lockheed Martin Black Hawks and Seahawks – a contract worth A$7 billion (€4.4 billion).
The MRH90, also known as the Taipan, is the Australian version of the NH90, a multirole helicopter operating with the French Army under the Caiman name. The aircraft was produced by the consortium of Airbus Helicopters’ NH Industries, Italy’s Leonardo and Dutch Fokker. To date, NH90 – which operates in 14 countries – has produced 440 copies.
This announcement comes less than three months after the Australian government instigated severe diplomatic crisis with Paris canceling a huge contract Related to the purchase of 12 French conventional-propelled submarines worth A$90 billion (€55 billion). Instead, Australia opted for US nuclear-powered submarines, as part of a new alliance with Washington and London to deal with rising US-China tensions in the Pacific.
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