Nepali Army (NA) has secured its purchase agreement of European made Écureuil H125 manufactured by Airbus Helicopter.
According to the Directorate of Public Relations and Information (DPR), the Directorate General of Army Aviation (DGAA) has sent a group of engineering team at Airbus facility at South Asia, Singapore for the type training. The H125 helicopter presently is at Airbus, Singapore and is expected to join the Mid Air Base, 11 No Brigade Tribhuvan International Airport by 1st week of July.
Earlier a representative team on the behalf of Chief of Army Staff (CoAS) General Rajendra Chhetri and Airbus Helicopter had signed the MOU for the procurement of 6 seater Écureuil H125 Helicopter. For the last two years, the army is under discussion into helicopter purchase with the company. The army is also discussing with the other companies to buy more two helicopters.
According to the Airbus, the H125 series are currently in-service worldwide, and are mainly used for high performance missions in high & hot environment conditions. “The H125 is a member of Airbus Helicopters’ rugged and proven Ecureuil family and some 6,000 Ecureuils have been delivered in nearly 120 countries for some 1,800 operators.”
The H125M is tailored for locating and attacking targets of opportunity. It relies on the qualities of power, simplicity, firing stability and stealth to carry out a diverse range of demanding missions. The H125M can be equipped with Airbus’ HForce weapons system– a comprehensive, modular and cost-efficient weapon system that can be used on any military version of Airbus’ civil helicopter range (H125M, H145M and H225M).
NA currently owns 10 aircraft which includes four MI-17, two Bell 206, two Écureuils and one Islander and one PZL M28 Sky truck. The defense force has recently sold its two Aérospatiale AS-332L-1 Super Puma an advanced chopper for VIPs to China.