Army swoops in for B1.34bn plane purchase

Army swoops in for B1.34bn plane purchase

The 19-seat G500 twin-engine business jet has a range of 9,630km. (Photo from Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation)
The 19-seat G500 twin-engine business jet has a range of 9,630km. (Photo from Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation)

The army plans to buy a new aircraft for general use worth 1.34 billion baht in the 2021 fiscal year, a source in the Army Transportation Department confirmed on Monday.

The confirmation was made after a document showing the army's plan to procure the medium-sized Gulfstream G500 circulated online.

According to the source, the procurement scheme was initially part of the spending plan in the 2020 fiscal year but it was postponed to the 2021 fiscal year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The source said the new plane, likely to be procured from Gulfstream Aerospace, will replace the current Beechcraft 1900yf which has been in use for more than 30 years for transportation purposes by the army and VIPs.

The manufacturer of the Beechcraft 1900yf earlier informed the army that it ceased production of the model and there are no spare parts available, prompting the army to consider a replacement, the source said, adding that the purchase has been approved by the screening committee.


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