The Algerian air force intends to acquire all-new AW249 attack helicopters and seven AW-139 helicopters from Italian Leonardo.
This was revealed at the thirteenth session of the Algerian-Italian Bilateral Committee for Cooperation in the Defense Sector held on November 30, at the Guidoni Palace in the capital, Rome, which is the headquarters of the General Secretariat of Defense and the National Directorate of Armaments in Italy.
Leonardo and Algiers expressed their intention to finalize this deal during the first semester of 2023.
After the meetings, Algerian military delegates paid a visit to the production site of Leonardo Military Industries in Varese.
Algeria aims to partner with Italy in the procurement of military equipment, as well as the preparations of the military industrial sector of this country in starting cooperation that includes exchange, technology transfer, training and targeted training for crews and technicians working in Algeria.
The new Leonardo AW249 NEES (Nuovo Elicottero da Esplorazione e Scorta / New Exploration and Escort Helicopter) will replace the AW129 Mangusta, which has been in service with the Italian Army since the 1990s and upgraded throughout the years.
“The AW249 meets emerging requirements for a latest generation combat helicopter to operate in a rapidly evolving battlespace over the next 30 years”, according to the manufacturer’s website. “The only new combat helicopter currently in design, it will combine advanced technologies, outstanding performance and high survivability, together with low operating costs.”