Indonesia’s defense ministry has announced an agreement with the US for 24 Sikorsky S-70M Black Hawk helicopters days after signing a deal for 24 F-15s.
Under the deal, Jakarta’s state-owned PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI) will collaborate with Lockheed Martin to deliver the multi-role choppers to the Indonesian National Armed Forces at an undisclosed date.
The aircraft will strengthen the Southeast Asian nation’s military air fleet and support military modernization efforts.
“We believe this strategic collaboration between PTDI and Sikorsky will generate added value for PTDI’s capabilities in integrating, customizing, modifying, and upgrading systems for helicopter completion,” PTDI director Gita Amperiawan said.
The Indonesian defense ministry did not disclose the total value of the agreement.
Meeting Security Needs
Lockheed’s S-70M Black Hawk is a “reliable” helicopter capable of carrying more than 10,350 pounds (4,695 kilograms) of payload.
It can deliver and extract 12 fully-equipped troops in extreme weather conditions, day or night.
The aircraft can also support medical evacuation, firefighting, disaster relief, and search and rescue missions.
The Black Hawk boasts better survivability and situational awareness than other multi-role helicopters thanks to its advanced digital avionics, powerful engines, and composite wide-chord rotor blades.
“The Black Hawk is designed and built to the strictest military standards, capable of quickly and reliably delivering personnel and supplies to areas scattered throughout the Indonesian archipelago,” Sikorsky president Paul Lemmo explained.
More than 4,000 Black Hawks are reportedly in service with 34 countries worldwide.
Increased Defense Spending
The ministry’s announcement comes days after it signed another purchase deal for 24 F-15EX fighter jets from Boeing.
The American company said the combat aircraft would put Jakarta “at the top of air dominance capabilities” because of its advanced features.
Boeing’s F-15EX boasts improved speed and range and the ability to carry many missiles to support combat missions.
Apart from the fighter jets, Indonesia ordered 12 military drones from Turkey for $300 million. They are expected to arrive in 2025.
The country also received 18 Rafale multi-role fighters from France as part of a $2.3-billion acquisition program signed in April.