Czech-U.S. helicopter deal officially signed |

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Czech-U.S. helicopter deal officially signed

Czech-U.S. helicopter deal officially signed

Czech Deputy Defence Minister for Armament Filip Riha and Erwin Boone, from the U.S. Bell firm, signed a memorandum on the participation of the Czech industry within the contract for the manufacturing of 12 U.S. military helicopters for the Czech military yesterday.

Riha also accepted the deals between the U.S. manufacturer and Czech companies. The contract was signed by Defence Minister Lubomir Metnar (for ANO) in the Pentagon a week ago.

The Czech Republic will pay 14.7 billion crowns without VAT. In the Czech military equipment, the helicopters will replace the outdated Russian combat helicopters Mi-24/35.

The Czech air force will acquire eight UH-1Y Venom utility helicopters and four AH-1Z Viper attack helicopters.

The supply is scheduled for 2023. The deal includes an agreement on the training of pilots and personnel, maintenance services and the supply of weapon systems and ammunition.

The contract includes the 30 percent participation of Czech companies in the deal. The U.S. firm has already concluded contracts on the relevant cooperation with the Czech state-run LOM Praha and Vojensky technicky ustav (VTU) as well as the Aero Vodochody, Ray Service and VR Group companies.

Riha received the documents from Boone. LOM Praha provides servicing for the Mi military helicopters and Aero Vodochody made cockpits for the Black Hawk helicopters.

VR Group deals with the training and production of simulators. "It is a great success that Czech firms had the opportunity to sign the memoranda or direct contracts for the participation in the project with the U.S. side," Riha said.

Boone said by acquiring the Venom and Viper helicopters, the Czech Republic would be the first outside the USA to have a bigger operational flexibility when deployed.

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