The Australian Government Prime Minister John Howard and Defence Minister Robert Hill confirmed order for 12 NH90 helicopters for Army.
Australian Aerospace will supply the new MRH90 to form an additional troop lift helicopter squadron dedicated to the Special Forces support role.
The MRH90 is the customized version of the NH90 Tactical Transport Helicopter built under the responsibility of NHIndustries, the company owned by Eurocopter (62.5%), Agusta (32%) and Stork Fokker (5.5%).
The 12 NH90 selected by Australian Government are additional to 431 units (including 86 options) ordered by 10 European and all over the world Countries. This represents a major step forward in terms of rationalisation and standardisation of equipment within the Armed Forces, and optimum interoperability in multinational tasks forces and United Nations missions.
First production NH90, assigned to German Army, flew on 4 May 2004 and will be soon followed by the maiden flight of Italian Army and Finnish Defence Forces production helicopters, in sight of the next beginning of deliveries.