MANILA -- All six brand-new light attack aircraft of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) will be delivered by February 2020, the Department of National Defense (DND) said Thursday.

This was bared by the DND Public Affairs Service when sought for an update on the possible delivery date of the Embraer Defense and Security A-29 "Super Tucano" close air support aircraft.

"All 'Super Tucano' units will be delivered by first quarter (of 2020) or by February," DND spokesperson Arsenio Andolong added.

The "Super Tucanos" are expected to beef up the remaining North American Rockwell OV-10 "Bronco" attack aircraft being used by the PAF in strike missions. The turboprop aircraft is designed for light attack, counter-insurgency, close air support, aerial reconnaissance missions in low threat environments, as well as providing pilot training.

Designed to operate in high temperature and humidity conditions in extremely rugged terrain, the "Super Tucano" is highly maneuverable, has a low heat signature and incorporates 4th generation avionics and weapons system to deliver precision-guided munitions.

The contract for the six "Super Tucano" was issued late 2017 and is worth PHP4.968 billion.

Funds will be sourced from the AFP Modernization Act Trust Fund. (PNA)