Philippines receives offer from Boeing for AH-6i Light Attack Helicopters

The Boeing AH-6i Light Attack Helicopter. Photo c/o Monch.

American aviation giant Boeing confirmed that they made an offer to the Philippine Army (PA) with their AH-6i Light Attack Helicopter to meet a potential demand for the type in its modernization plans.

This offer is different from the one related to US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) on potential sale of Boeing AH-64E Apache Guardian, which are earmarked for the Philippine Air Force.

The PA has expressed its interest in having a small fleet of armed helicopters as part of its program to enhance the overall capability of the service. Currently, the PA has no helicopters in its fleet, and only has a few light trainer and liaison aircraft with its recently formed Army Aviation Regiment.

In an email reply by Philippine defense page MaxDefense Philippines, it confirmed that there are several aircraft acquisition programs in line with the Philippine Army, which also includes a small fleet of Light Attack Helicopters where the Boeing AH-6i fits, then there is also a requirement for Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter specifying larger attack helicopters. 

MaxDefense Philippines also pointed out that Boeing previously offered the AH-6i to the Philippine Air Force (PAF) in 2018 for its Attack Helicopter project, but did not meet the finalized specifications as the PAF was looking for a twin-engine light helicopter model, before it again shifted to going with larger attack helicopters.

The Boeing AH-6i are small lightly armed helicopters that are far more affordable compared to larger conversional attack helicopters. It can be used for a variety of missions including close air support, anti-tank and anti-bunker, and limited reconnaissance and surveillance roles. 

The AH-6i can be armed with rocket launchers and gun pods, and missiles including the AGM-114 Hellfire II anti-tank missile or FIM-92 Stinger air-to-air missiles.

The helicopters are in service with the Royal Jordanian Air Force, and were ordered by the Saudi Arabian National Guard and the Royal Thai Army.

[1] Jane’s Defence Weekly
[2] MaxDefense Philippines
[3] Boeing

Philippines receives offer from Boeing for AH-6i Light Attack Helicopters Philippines receives offer from Boeing for AH-6i Light Attack Helicopters Reviewed by Asia Pacific Defense Journal on May 06, 2020 Rating: 5

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