Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - 09:30
Defence helicopter costs on the rise
Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert of Defense warns Parliament that the modernization of some of the Ministry's military helicopters will be more expensive than previously thought, Elsevier reports. Of Defense's Chinook transport helicopters, 11 have to be replaced and six have to be modernized. American company Boeing has issued a tender that is more expensive than estimated. In a letter to Parliament about the budget for next year, Minister Plasschaert says that she is looking for alternatives, and hopes to come with a solution towards the end of next year. Along with Chinook helicopters, the NH90 fighter helicopters are also in trouble. According to the Minister, there is a rust and general wear problem. These aircrafts belong to the Marines, and Defense refuses to take them over. Minister Plasschaert says that to replace these NH90s, Defense will have to take on extra Cougar helicopters, on top of the eight it already has. On top of that, Defense wanted more Chinooks, but these are now more expensive than wished.