Singapore has announced today that it is taking delivery of new CH-47F Heavy Lift Helicopters that will be based in Oakey, Queensland.
As ADM's Deputy Editor Nigel Pittaway reported in August last year, 10 new-build Singaporean CH-47Fs will be based at Oakey. Singapore has had five CH-47D Chinooks based out of Oakey since 2018.
The new helicopters are replacing older Chinooks that have been in service with the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) since 1994.
"The initial delivery of the CH-47F to the RSAF Helicopter Detachment in Oakey, Australia, will enable the RSAF to leverage the vast airspace and terrain for more realistic training," the RSAF said in a statement on social media. "The opportunity for the RSAF to train in Australia is a reflection of the close and longstanding defence relationship with Australia.
"The CH-47F is an advanced helicopter with a fully integrated, digital cockpit management system, and advanced cargo-handling capabilities. These features, coupled with capabilities such as an enhanced self-protection suite and Satellite Communication (SATCOM) system, will enable it to better meet the SAF’s lift requirements.
"When operationalised, the CH-47F helicopters will complement the RSAF’s fleet of helicopters to provide the [Singapore Armed Forces] with a robust heli-lift capability for a wide range of operations including Search and Rescue (SAR), Aeromedical Evacuation (AME) and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR)."
The Oakey agreement between Australia and Singapore was signed in 1996 and came into effect in 1998. Last year, Defence confirmed to ADM that the number of Singaporean Chinooks in-country would increase under the terms of the agreement.