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UK to Evaluate Bids for $1.27B New Medium Helicopter Contract

UK to Evaluate Bids for $1.27B New Medium Helicopter Contract

The British government is now accepting bids for the New Medium Helicopter program following the release of an invitation to negotiate during the International Military Helicopter conference in London.

Only three companies are shortlisted to compete for the $1.27 billion NMH contract, namely Airbus Helicopters UK, Leonardo Helicopters UK and Lockheed Martin UK.

According to a Breaking Defense report, the NMH program is expected to procure new helicopters to replace the Royal Air Force Puma, Bell 212, Bell 412 and Airbus AS365 Dauphins aircraft fleets.

Airbus, in partnership with Boeing, will offer the United Kingdom its H175M aircraft, while Leonardo and Lockheed Martin’s Sikorsky will propose developing the AW149 helicopter and the S-70M Black Hawk, respectively.

The British government intends to award the NMH contract in 2025 following an evaluation by the U.K. Ministry of Defence. 

Besides operational capability, the evaluation will focus on selecting the aircraft that will provide the U.K. operational independence. James Cartlidge, minister of defense procurement, said securing operational independence, in terms of design, production, manufacture and export, will increase readiness to respond to threats.

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