The Afghan National Army Air Corps has received its first two of four Antonov An-32 transports acquired through the US Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) under a unique Foreign Military Sales arrangement.
Purchased from commercial sources in Kiev, Ukraine, following technical inspections completed by navy personnel, the newly acquired aircraft form part of an initiative intended to provide Afghanistan’s armed forces with a credible aviation component as part of NATO-led reconstruction effort inside the country.
Afghanistan’s existing An-32 inventory has operated since 1989 with no logistics support infrastructure, according to NAVAIR, which has also purchased support systems for the nation’s latest aircraft.
The An-32s “met the required specifications and were in excellent condition,” according to NAVAIR, which moved from project approval to first deliveries inside 14 weeks.
“With this An-32 buy, the team got to see the entire process happen in front of their eyes in a little more than 60 days,” says Capt James Wallace, programme manager for the navy’s support and commercial derivative aircraft programme office.