The Philippine military will procure US-made High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) and Indian BrahMos anti-ship cruise missiles later this year.
The announcement was made by Philippine Army Lt. Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. during a recent event in Nueva Ecija province.
The planned acquisition is part of the country’s ongoing military modernization.
The HIMARS, capable of hitting targets at 300 kilometers (186 miles), has been featured in joint military exercises between the US and Manila.
Philippine military officials had a glimpse of its capability when it hit a decommissioned warship during this year’s Balikatan exercises.
“We have already been trained by our US counterparts on the use of this modern equipment even if they are not yet in our inventory,” Brawner explained. “This is to make sure once we get these new weapons systems, we already have the unit in place, the facilities, and we have the people who are trained for use on these weapons systems.”
Stalled BrahMos Deal
Manila’s acquisition of BrahMos cruise missiles from India is part of a $375-million deal proposed in January 2022.
Then-President Rodrigo Duterte was supposed to sign the agreement during his state visit to New Delhi.
However, the deal was not finalized because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
With the resumption of the procurement, the Philippines is poised to become the first foreign country to buy the BrahMos missile.
“In the coming years, ladies and gentlemen, you will be seeing an even stronger, more lethal, Army Artillery Regiment. Our new equipment will be coming soon,” Brawner said in a mix of English and Tagalog.