3 Japanese-donated patrol planes now in Navy possession

By Priam Nepomuceno

March 26, 2018, 11:57 am

<p>Beechcraft King Air TC-90 patrol plane. <em>(Photo by Priam F. Nepomuceno)</em></p>

Beechcraft King Air TC-90 patrol plane. (Photo by Priam F. Nepomuceno)

MANILA -- The Philippine Navy (PN) formally received three more Japanese-donated Beechcraft King Air TC-90 patrol aircraft during short ceremonies at Naval Air Group headquarters in Sangley Point, Cavite City Monday.

The planes were donated by the Japanese government, PN spokesperson Capt. Lued Lincuna said.

Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana witnessed the event and served as guest-of-honor and speaker.

Other attendees were Parlimentary Vice Minister of Defense Tatsuo Fukuda, Commissioner of Acquisition, Technology and Logistic Agency Yoshiyuki Suzuki, Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koji Haneda, and delegates from the Japan Ministry of Defense, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and key Philippine military officials.

The three TC-90s were accorded the traditional water cannon salute upon landing at the runway of the Major Danilo Atienza Air Base in Sangley Point, Cavite City.

Lincuna said a meeting point procedure was initially rendered when the three TC-90s were met by the two recently activated TC-90s over Batanes and afterwards escorted them to the Laoag Airport.

The aircraft have a range of over 1,000 nautical miles, and a maximum speed of 226 knots and capable of carrying eight passengers along with the pilots.

Aside from the donated planes, the Navy is operating around six Norman Britten "Islander" patrol aircraft, five AgustaWestland combat utility helicopters, and a Robinson R-22 training helicopter.

The TC-90, which is part of the Beechcraft King Air aircraft family, was offered by Japan shortly after the Agreement Concerning the Transfer of Defense Equipment and Technology was finalized on Feb. 29, 2016. (PNA)