Japan positions C-2 transport aircraft for exports

09 October 2017
Japan began deploying its C-2 aircraft from Miho Air Base in May. Source: Japanese Air Self-Defence Force

The Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD) is increasing efforts to promote Kawasaki Heavy Industries’ (KHI’s) C-2 medium transport aircraft to international customers, it confirmed on 6 October.

The MoD said in a statement that, for the first time, it is flying the C-2 to foreign countries to display the aircraft to customers in the Middle East and New Zealand.

The MoD added that the Japan Air Self-Defense Force will fly the C-2 to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to participate in the Dubai Airshow in mid-November while later that month, it will present the aircraft to the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF).

The MoD cited Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera as saying that the C-2’s capabilities had attracted interest in international markets and that the decision to display the aircraft in the Middle East and New Zealand is an opportunity to demonstrate Japanese defence technologies.

The KHI C-2 formally entered service into the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) in March 2016. The JASDF currently operates four C-2s but it is expected to order about 60 aircraft in total to replace its ageing Kawasaki C-1 and Lockheed Martin C-130H transports.

According to Jane’s All The World's Aircraft: Development & Production , the 44-m long C-2 is the largest transport aircraft in service with the JASDF. It is intended to provide greater range than the platforms it is replacing, with a stated range of 3,024 n miles (5,600 km; 3,480 miles) when carrying its maximum payload of 30 tonnes.

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