Pandemic delays delivery to PH Air Force of refurbished C-130s

by Inquirer | July 28, 2020

MANILA, Philippines—The COVID-19 pandemic has delayed the delivery of the first of two refurbished Lockheed C-130 Hercules transport planes to the Philippine Air Force this month.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana told INQUIRER.net that the delivery would instead be set “sometime before the end of 2020.”

Insiders privy to delivery said that the United States, the source of the cargo planes, had advised Philippine officials that the delivery, intended for July, would be moved to October due to disruption in schedules caused by the global health crisis.

The delivery of the second C-130 might take place in 2021 instead of this year, Lorenzana also said.

The additional C-130s would have been a welcome inclusion in the Philippine Air Force inventory. Two full mission capable C-130s are currently helping out transport medical supplies and locally stranded individuals across the country.

The coming C-130s were procured through the US foreign military financing program. Both planes cost P2.5 billion but the Philippines would pay only P1.6 billion, while the US would bankroll the rest of the amount, P900 million.