The Philippines expects to get six fighter jets and an air defense radar by 2016 to enhance its territorial defense capability, a military spokesman said.

Six jets will serve as surface attack aircraft and lead-in fighter trainers, Air Force spokesman Lt. Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol said.

Aside from the jets and radar, the Air Force also expects to get a “special mission aircraft” and “light lift aircraft” by 2016, he said.

“It (special mission aircraft) is a multi-purpose aircraft that we can also use for maritime security as well as protecting our environment,” Okol said in a text message.

The light lift aircraft will replace the ageing Nomad and Fokker planes which the force currently uses, he said.

“Hopefully we will see initial deliveries by 2013 to 2014 or at the most, 2015,” he told reporters.

Okol could not say how much the government will spend for buying the new equipment but said these are now all part of the defense acquisition system being discussed in meetings by top officials of the Department of National Defense and Armed Forces. (John Roson)

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