23 Juli 2011
Blackhawk helicopter of the RBAF (photo : Troll-Timawa)
Brunei has shortlisted the Eurocopter EC725 and Sikorksy S-70i Black Hawk for its support helicopter programme.
The defence ministry said two other candidates have been eliminated from the competition - the AgustaWestland AW139 and Bell 412.
"The support helicopter project seeks vendors to propose a solution for the Royal Brunei Air Force based on their helicopter products to meet certain capabilities and mission profiles as required," the defence ministry said.
"As such, the number of aircraft to be procured is undetermined at this stage, as it will be dependent on which helicopter vendor is awarded the contract."
EC-725 Helicopter (photo : Latinaero)
A deal is expected to be signed by the end of 2011, with first deliveries in early 2014. The defence ministry said the helicopter selected will replace the air force's Bell 212s and MBB BO105s.
"With new helicopters, the Royal Brunei Air Force will be able to increase the transport capacity of the military to deploy troops both domestically and regionally," the ministry said.