BRUNEI has confirmed it will transfer its Sikorsky S-70A Black Hawk helicopters to Malaysia in a move to bolster long-standing defence ties between the two countries.
The Ministry of Defence (MinDef) said in a statement yesterday the military helicopters are expected to be ready for transfer to the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) as early as September, when the new Royal Brunei Air Force (RBAirF) S-70i Black Hawk helicopters become fully operational.
Both parties are set to further discuss the transfer of the S-70A Black Hawk helicopters, which are still in service with the RBAirF.
MinDef said it hoped that besides enhancing defence cooperation, the transfer of the military helicopters will contribute towards enhancing the capability of the RMAF in line with bilateral efforts to preserve peace and security of the region.
"MinDef is pleased to inform that defence ties between Brunei and Malaysia are getting closer," said the ministry in a statement on their website.
Defence ties continue to grow with frequent meetings between both countries; exchange of training and joint military exercises; sharing of intelligence; and participation in international peacekeeping missions, such as the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) and International Monitoring Team (IMT).
The S-70A Black Hawk helicopters are currently operated by the Fourth Squadron for tasks including troop lift as well as casualty and medical evacuation.