Norway orders five maritime patrol aircraft

Huang Panyue

OSLO, April 4 (Xinhua) -- Norway is buying five Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft to strengthen its defense capabilities, the Nordic country's Defense Ministry said Tuesday.

"We have now signed the contract for five new P-8A maritime patrol aircraft. The procurement is underlining Norway's allied commitment to spending on defense capabilities vital to both NATO and Norway," Norwegian Defense Minister Ine Eriksen Soreide was quoted as saying in a statement.

The P-8s will be delivered in 2022 and 2023, and will cost the state approximately 10 billion kroner (1.16 billion U.S. dollars), according to the statement.

The new aircraft will replace six aging P-3 Orions and three Jet Falcons. The Orions will continue their mission until the Poseidons arrive.

The P-8s are able to conduct anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, search and rescue, and other roles.

The basic task of Norwegian maritime patrol aircraft has been the surveillance of Norwegian and adjacent waters, the statement said.

Both the U.S. Navy and Britain's Royal Air Force will operate the same aircraft and Norway "looks forward to close and efficient cooperation in operations, logistics, maintenance and other functions," the statement said.

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