The Dutch defence ministry has confirmed that eight of the Royal Netherlands Navy's Lockheed Martin P-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft will be delivered to Germany from next year in a deal worth €295 million ($367 million).

EADS hopes to secure contracts to support the aircraft at its Manching site near Munich, drawing on EADS Casa's experience in working on Spain's P-3B fleet. Work on German air force combat aircraft such as the McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom and Panavia Tornado is beginning to dry up at Manching, and the introduction of a new large aircraft type would boost work levels.

The German navy is expected to retire its 14 Atlantic 1 anti-submarine warfare aircraft almost immediately after accepting the P-3s between November 2005 and March 2006.

Source: Flight International