The Philippine Air Force (PAF) on Wednesday received two more FA-50 fighter jets in Clark Air Base, Pampanga from a South Korean manufacturer.
At a news conference, PAF spokesperson Col. Antonio Francisco said the aircraft, with tail number 009 and 010, touched down in Clark around 11:20 a.m. and was welcomed by 1st Air Division commander Maj. Gen. Enrique Reyes.
Francisco said Air Logistics Command chief Maj. Gen. Arnold Mancita and the air base's council of elder commanders also welcomed the fighter jets.
The delivery of the jets brings the total number of FA-50s in the Armed Forces' inventory to 10 following last month's arrival of two FA-50s.
The jets are part of the 12 FA-50s purchased by the military from manufacturer Korean Aerospace Industries for P18.9 billion during the Aquino administration.
Francisco said the military hopes the two remaining fighters jets, with tail number 011 and 012, would be delivered in time for the PAF's founding anniversary in July.
"We are expecting that hopefully by next month, pero hindi pa natin alam yung delivery schedule, exact date, pero within the year... hinahabol natin before the anniversary ng Air Force," he said.
Since the first batch was delivered in November 2015, Francisco said the FA-50s have helped PAF train its pilots in case the government purchases more fighter jets.
"Our FA-50 is very functional right now for us, of course besides the territorial defense, it is a multi-role fighter, lead-in surface attack and trainer aircraft," Francisco said.
"What we are really focusing right now is the training of our pilots. Kasi if there will be a possibility that we are going to acquire some more fighters in the future, then at least we already generated more pilots who have skills and time dito sa ating supersonic na fighter planes natin," he added.
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