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Portugal receives former German Orion MPA

One of six former German Navy P-3C Orion MPA that are being transferred to the Portuguese Air Force. (Janes/Patrick Allen)

The first of six Lockheed P-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) acquired from Germany arrived in Portugal on 9 February, the Portuguese Air Force (Força Aérea Portuguesa: FAP) announced.

Portugal acquired six P-3C Capability Upkeep Program (CUP) Orion aircraft of the German Navy's Marinefliegergeschwader 3 ‘Graf Zeppelin' Squadron in September 2023.

The contract is worth approximately EUR45 million (USD48.5 million) and is scheduled to be fully fulfilled by 2027. It also includes delivery of mid-life upgrade (MLU) sets, spares, support and test equipment, and simulators.

The FAP has identified this acquisition as an opportunity to guarantee the operation of the current P-3C CUP+ aircraft over the coming years without significant constraints, the service previously told Janes.

The FAP is now evaluating the possibility of keeping in service and modernising some of the P-3C CUP Orion aircraft it receives from Germany, the Director of the Engineering and Programs Directorate, Brigadier General João Rui Ramos Nogueira, recently told Janes.

For more information on Portugal's P-3 fleet, seePortugal seeks to upgrade Orion MPA fleet

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