The US has approved the possible sale of two Lockheed Martin C-130T tactical transport aircraft to the Philippines.
In a late July statement, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notified Congress of the possible Foreign Military Sales deal. The package also includes 10 Rolls-Royce T56-16 engines (of which two are spares), sustainment and support for three years, and other support services and equipment related to the package.
The cost of the deal is $61 million, but the DSCA notes that it has yet to be concluded.
If the deal goes through, it will greatly enhance Manila’s tactical transport capabilities, and improve its ability to respond to natural disasters. Flightglobal’s Ascend Fleets database shows that the Philippines operates a single 1961-vintage C-130B, and a pair of C-130Hs. The build years of the C-130Hs are 1976 and 1977.
Ascend also shows that Philippines has a single 1964 vintage L-100 in storage.
The C-130T proposal comes amidst a renaissance in Philippine airpower. In May, the country invited bids in a Ps6 billion ($23 million) programme for two long range patrol aircraft. Two months earlier, in March, Manila signed a deal for 12 Korea Aerospace Industries FA-50 fighter aircraft, as it seeks to recapitalise its dormant jet fighter capabilities.