MANILA, -- The Philippines Air Force (PAF) is training more pilots to fly the F50 fighter jets the government has acquired from South Korea.
As soon as the remaining 10 units of the F50s have all been delivered, highly trained pilots will already be around to man and fly the fighter aircraft, Air Force spokesman Col. Ernico Canaya said
“Our pilots are now gaining (flight) proficiency (training) as they are now flying regularly the two F50s so that when all other aircraft finally arrives, they will ready to fly the supersonic fighter jets,” he said.
The PAF is acquiring spare parts and other avionics needed to maintain the South Korean-made fighter jets.
Canaya said the PAF will conduct a public bidding for the purchase of the spare parts for the F50s. Two out of the 10 jet fighters have been delivered.
The Philippines, through government-to-government negotiation, acquired a squadron of F50 fighter jets from South Korea for P18.9 billion under the contract signed with Korean Aerospace Industries (KIA) in March 2013.
Canaya said the PAF has the responsibility to keep these fighter jets in top shape by acquiring spare parts.
“The two delivered F50s are in top shape but we have to ensure that we have the spare parts stocks, not only for two, but for entire squadron that we have acquired,” Canaya said.
The Philippine Air Force's FA-50PH at the Air Force City base in Clark Airfield, Pampanga Philippines.