Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force negotiates buy od additional 12 AW101 helicopters

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Leonardo Helicopters is in discussions with the Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force for a follow-on order of a dozen Agusta-Westland AW101 rotorcraft.

Tokyo already operates seven of an eventual 11-strong fleet of the heavy helicopters configured for minesweeping missions, designated as the MCH-101, plus two of an eventual three CH-101 utility transports.

Speaking at a 17 June media briefing, Giovanni Soccodato, Leonardo’s executive vice-president for strategies, markets and business development, said the company was “close to finalising” a new contract with Tokyo.

And Stefano Bortoli, sales and marketing senior vice-president for the helicopter division, adds: “We are in discussions for an incremental batch of over a dozen new aircraft.”