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Canadian military to get 15 new 'copters

Aug. 11, 2009 at 10:37 AM

OTTAWA, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- The Canadian government has finalized a deal to acquire 15 new heavy-duty, U.S.-built military helicopters with a $5 billion price tag, defense officials said.

The heavy-lift Chinooks will be built by Boeing in Pennsylvania at a cost of $1.2 billion, the Ottawa Citizen reported. Another $2.2 billion was allocated for a 20-year service and support contract and about $1.7 billion is expected for other maintenance and upgrades, defense officials said.

Delivery is scheduled for July 2013, Defense Minister Peter MacKay said.

For its NATO combat role in Afghanistan, Canada purchased six used Chinooks from the U.S. military for about $290 million, the report said.

Earlier this year, Canada also announced a $5 billion purchase of new armored vehicles for the military, and MacKay was to announce details Tuesday of special equipment add-ons to the fleet to better protect troops from roadside bombs, Canwest said.

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