Slovenia to Acquire Multipurpose Helicopters and C-27J Spartan Transport Aircraft

The Slovenian Ministry of Defense announced on July 13, 2023,  its new acquisition plans for the years 2023 to 2026, aimed at enhancing the country's military capabilities. Among the planned acquisitions are six multipurpose helicopters, potentially including the Eurocopter AS532 Cougar model, and a C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft manufactured by Italy's Leonardo.

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Slovenia Unveils Defense Modernization Plans Acquisition of Multipurpose Helicopters and C27J Spartan Transport Aircraft 925   Sky Soldiers jump from an Italian C-27J Spartan from Leonardo Defense Industry. (Picture source: DVIDS)

With a total value of approximately €159 million ($176.9 million), the procurement will include the second C-27J Spartan aircraft to be ordered by Slovenia, as well as the purchase of new helicopters to replace the current Bell 412 fleet.

The Ministry of Defense has obtained government approval for the necessary amendments to these two acquisition projects. The helicopter acquisition, which may feature Eurocopter AS532 Cougar models, is estimated to be worth around €195.2 million ($217.2 million).

The primary objective of acquiring these multipurpose helicopters is to enhance the operability and availability of the Slovenian military's helicopter fleet, by developing its air transport capabilities with medium transport and light multipurpose helicopters, as stated by the Defense Ministry.

The current Bell 412 fleet will be gradually replaced during the 2023-2027 period, with the planned acquisition of six new multipurpose helicopters,  with further acquisitions expected after 2028.

In addition to the aircraft acquisitions, the Slovenian Ministry of Defense also intends to purchase new eight-wheel-drive vehicles to strengthen the country's land forces. Furthermore, they have announced the acquisition of the German-made IRIS-T medium-range air defense system, as Air Recognition editorial team reported on July 20, 2023.

These acquisition projects demonstrate Slovenia's commitment to modernizing its defense capabilities and enhancing its national security. They also reflect the country's willingness to cooperate with international partners to maintain regional stability.

The Ministry of Defense will closely monitor the progress of these acquisition projects and aims to implement these new acquisitions in the coming years. These initiatives will not only boost the local industry but also bolster the country's economy while enhancing its security and defense.