The Jakarta Post
Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro and Australian Ambassador to Indonesia Greg Moriarty signed an agreement to grant four C-130 type Hercules aircraft to Indonesia, on Friday.
'One of the aircraft, with tail number A97-006, is ready to be delivered,' said Purnomo after the signing of ceremony at the Defense Ministry on Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat in Jakarta, as quoted by tempo.co.
Three other aircraft with tail numbers A97-001, A97-003 and A97-009 still need to be renovated before being delivered to Indonesia.
'After renovation, the three aircraft will be delivered in stages starting from October this year to December 2014,' said Purnomo.
The renovation and delivery of the aircraft cost Aus$63 million - a contract price between the Defense Ministry and a maintenance contractor appointed by the Australian government, Qantas Defence Services (QDS).
The signing of the agreement on the grant for the three military aircraft was warmly welcomed by the Australian government.
'Hopefully, with the signing of this agreement, the bilateral relations between the two countries can be tied closer,' said Ambassador Moriarty in his speech.
On the appointment of QDS as maintenance operator, Moriarty said QDS was a company with vast experience in handling C-130 type Hercules aircraft.
'QDS is also the only company appointed by Royal Australia Air Force (RAAF) to carry out maintenance on its Hercules aircraft,' said Greg.
Apart from the granted aircraft, a follow up partnership still being discussed between Indonesia and Australia is focusing on the purchasing of several C-138 type Hercules aircraft.
'We plan to buy five C-138 type Hercules aircraft, but we are still negotiating,' said Purnomo.
He said the Defense Ministry also would send pilots to Australia to undergo training on operating the aircraft. (apt/ebf)
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