Slovakian Defence Minister Martin Glváč confirmed on April 30 that his country is to purchase nine Sikorsky UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters. He said that he had received a mandate from Slovakia’s Council the previous day giving the go-ahead for their acquisition.
The purchase will be the largest modernisation programme in the history of its Armed Forces. Glváč said that the complete package, which will be through a government-to-government contract, would cost more than $261 million. The contract was due to be finalised on May 4, but there has been no confirmation since then that it has been signed. Agreement on the deal, which also includes a training package, followed three months of negotiations.
The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) had notified Congress of the proposed deal on February 18 this year, after the US State Department had approved the sale. The new Black Hawks will replace the Air Force of the Slovak Republic’s eight Mi-17s. The Defence Minister said that deliveries are anticipated between 2016 and 2019. Alan Warnes