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Britain’s defense ministry has committed to purchasing a new fleet of Boeing-built extended-range Chinook helicopters. This acquisition, intended primarily for British special forces, will include fourteen CH-47-ER Chinooks, enhancing the Royal Air Force’s capabilities.

The new Chinook helicopters, set to begin delivery in 2027, will replace older models in the fleet, maintaining the total number of aircraft at 51.

Ex Black Marauder Chinook Helicopters

Defense Secretary Grant Shapps confirmed the advancement of the Chinook Capability Sustainment Program, a project initially announced in May 2021 but delayed due to financial issues. According to Shapps, the government was able to negotiate a savings of over £300 million.

This all comes as the deal faced numerous hurdles, notably concerns over cost increases. Initial budget estimations for the program were set at $1.9 billion. However, inflation, exchange rate fluctuations, and other financial challenges significantly increased the projected costs. At one point, the cost increases became so high that Ben Wallace, then former defense secretary, considered canceling the entire program due to these increasing expenses. Despite this, Shapps has confirmed the UK will move forward with the purchase


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