Germany renegotiates helo procurements

March 18, 2013 at 12:52 PM

BERLIN, March 18 (UPI) -- The German military is cutting back on the procurement of Tiger support and NH 90 helicopters, resulting in "substantial" savings.

The Tiger support helicopter is manufactured by Eurocopter and the NF 90 is made by NHIndustries, which is owned by Eurocopter, AgustaWestland and Fokker.

Germany had ordered 80 Tiger helicopters. That number was reduced to 57, Germany's Ministry of Defense said. The number of NH90 helicopters the country will receive is now 82. Germany had ordered 122 of the aircraft.

The order reductions came following negotiations with the manufacturers and the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding.

"This is an important milestone for the significant restructuring of these two major weapons systems of the Bundeswehr," the ministry said. "It will now be implemented by a new contract to be signed with industry."

Germany said it reduced the number of aircraft it is buying as a result of "the revised needs of the armed forces."

Eleven Tiger utility helicopters have been delivered to Germany but Eurocopter agreed to buy them back.

"The financial envelope freed up by implementation of the MoU and returned to the defense budget is substantial," the ministry said.

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