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8 avril 2014 2 08 /04 /avril /2014 07:40
Hungary Buys Mi-8 Helos, Eyes $470M Aircraft Procurement

Hungary is acquiring Mi-8 transport helicopters as part of an effort to improve its airlift capabilities. Here, a Croatian Mi-8 participates in a NATO exercise. (NATO)

 

Apr. 7, 2014 - By JAROSLAW ADAMOWSKI – Defense News

 

WARSAW — The Hungarian Ministry of Defense has acquired three Mil Mi-8 transport helicopters produced by Russia’s state-run Rosoboronprom and imported by a Hungarian defense firm.

 

Meanwhile, the country’s armed forces are planning to purchase new helos and transport aircraft under a 105 billion forint (US $470 million) modernization program, of which 100 billion forints are to be spent on helicopters and 5 billion forints on planes.

 

Last year, Defense Minister Csaba Hende said Hungary was planning to significantly strengthen its airlift capability by 2016.

 

The Mi-8 purchase is estimated to be worth about 2 billion forints, reported local daily Magyar Nemzet. The helos were transported to the Kecskemét air base onboard an Antonov An-124 plane.

 

The Hungarian government has postponed the launch of the aircraft acquisition program due to the April 6 parliamentary elections. With the ruling Fidesz Party of Prime Minister Viktor Orban securing a comfortable majority in the vote, the country’s Defense Ministry is expected to go ahead with the much-awaited program.

 

In 2013, Hungary had a defense budget of 241.37 billion forints

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