After a multi-leg three-week delivery flight, Embraer has turned over the first batch of four A-29 Super Tucanos to the Philippines Air Force (PAF). The aircraft departed São Jose on August 29 and landed at Clark airbase near Manila on September 19 after transiting through various locations such as Cape Verde; Malta; and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
The Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs and Embraer confirmed the delivery and added that the remaining two aircraft will be delivered in the “coming weeks.”
The PAF placed a firm order for six Super Tucanos in November 2017 after it was identified in June 2016 as the sole compliant bidder for the PAF’s Close Air Support program. It edged out the Aero Vodochody L-39NG jet and the Textron Beechcraft AT-6 turboprop.
It is likely that the turboprops will be assigned to the 15th Strike Wing, joining eight Rockwell OV-10B Broncos, although it is still unlikely that the Broncos will be phased out immediately as the U.S. was reported to be transferring four ex-Air Force OV-10s and spares to the Philippines in 2018.