Cabinet Approves Purchase of Five KC-390 Aircraft
(Source: Portuguese Government; issued July 11, 2019)
(Unofficial translation by
Portugal has become the first foreign buyer of the KC-390 tanker/transport aircraft developed by Embraer; its government cabinet yesterday approved €827 million to buy five aircraft to replace its 40-year old fleet of C-130s from 2023. (Embraer photo)
The Cabinet has approved the expenditure for the purchase of five KC-390 aircraft, a flight simulator, and the aircraft logistics and flight simulator contracts.

At the press conference after the Council of Ministers, Minister of National Defense João Gomes Cravinho explained that the aircraft, with intercontinental range and true multi-mission capabilities, will be able to execute strategic and tactical operations, both civil and military, without limitations, from transporting troops, vehicles and cargoes, to launching paratroopers, and can also be refueled in the air.

It has a long-range cruising speed and range of action higher than C-130 aircraft.

"It is a great time to announce that the RCM gives the authorization to finance the acquisition of five KC-390 aircraft," said the Minister of National Defense, revealing that the authorized expenditure of 827 million euros for these aircraft that will perform dual civilian and military missions. Where necessary, they may carry out medical evacuation, search and rescue, patient transport and fire-fighting missions.

Aircraft with 'unique characteristics'

During the conference, the Minister also highlighted the "unique characteristics of the KC-390" which "set a new standard for strategic military transport, hitherto only possible with four-engine aircraft of superior dimensions and capabilities."

For João Gomes Cravinho, this is a solution "that fully satisfies the requirements defined by the Portuguese State, as well as those required for participation in military operations that may result from the alliances of which Portugal is a part".

"It is an aircraft with two engines but with capabilities that only the four-engine aircraft can achieve," he said, highlighting its "intercontinental reach."

KC-390 to replace fleet C-130

The five KC-390 aircraft, whose acquisition has now been authorized, will replace the current C-130 fleet, which entered service with the Portuguese Air Force about 40 years ago. The Minister said that this is a necessary measure, since the C-130 fleet has already reached the limit of its use.

In response to journalists, João Gomes Cravinho said that the C-130 are already "at the limit of their useful life" and that they "have a few years of useful life ahead."

"They are now undergoing a minor upgrade to continue flying until the new KC-390 fleet is complete," he added.

I encourage 'our economy'

About Embraer, the company responsible for the development of KC-390 aircraft, the Minister said that there was a long process of dialogue, partnership, joint work and also negotiation "to define the price and technical specifications" of the aircraft.

João Gomes Cravinho also highlighted the fact that the development of this aircraft represents "a very significant stimulus for our economy," not only for the companies that were already involved in the project but also for its future marketing and sales.

The minister also said that the aircraft will start arriving in February 2023 at a rate of one per year until February 2027.


Portugal Announces Firm Order for the Multi-Mission Airlift KC-390
(Source: Embraer; issued July 11, 2019)
SÃO PAULO, Brazil --- The Portuguese Government announced today a firm order of five multi-mission airlifters Embraer KC-390 as part of the process to modernize Portuguese Air Force capacities to support national Armed Forces operations and increase readiness in missions of public interest. Deliveries are scheduled to start in 2023.

The KC-390 is designed to set new standards for efficiency and productivity in its category while presenting the lowest life-cycle cost of the market. The aircraft can perform different types of military and civilian missions including humanitarian support, medical evacuation, search and rescue and firefighting, while fully meeting the requirements of the Portuguese Air Force, adding new superior cargo and troops transport, aerial delivery and aerial refueling capabilities.

“Today is a historic day for the KC-390 Program and I want to thank those who have contributed to the project. This is a very important step to consolidate the aircraft which we believe will become another success for Embraer. The Portuguese KC-390 will meet new interoperability requirements, in the areas of secure navigation, data and voice transmission that will allow the KC-390 to integrate joint operations in multinational alliances in which Portugal is integrated.

“These requirements, developed in partnership with the Portuguese Air Force, will enable the KC-390 to meet the needs of many other nations around the world.” said Jackson Schneider, President and CEO of Embraer Defense & Security. “The industrial partnership between Portugal and Embraer contributes to the development of engineering and the Portuguese aeronautics industry, representing more than 300 million euros in exports each year and thousands of highly skilled jobs.”

Portugal is the largest international partner of the KC-390 Program and its participation in the development and production of the aircraft is recognized as having had a positive economic impact in the generation of jobs, new investments, increased exports and technological advances.

The KC-390 has received its Civil Certification from the Brazilian National Aviation Agency (ANAC) in 2018 and is now in full serial production. Entry into service is expected to occur in the 3rd quarter of 2019 with the Brazilian Air Force (FAB), with follow-on deliveries to occur throughout the year.

A global aerospace company headquartered in Brazil, Embraer designs, develops, manufactures and markets aircraft and systems, providing Services & Support to customers after-sales. Since it was founded in 1969, Embraer has delivered more than 8,000 aircraft. Embraer is the leading manufacturer of commercial jets up to 150 seats and the main exporter of high value-added goods in Brazil.


Portuguese Government Announces Approval of Purchase of Five KC-390 Aircraft
(Source: Brazilian Ministry of Defense, issued July 11, 2019)
(Unofficial translation by
BRASILIA --- The Council of Ministers of Portugal approved the purchase of five KC-390 aircraft. The decision was published on the official website of the European country's government on Thursday (11). The Portuguese Council of Ministers also approved the contracting of aircraft logistic support services and the flight simulator and the acquisition of electronic warfare equipment.

According to the statement published on the site, the acquisition will strengthen current air transport, search and rescue capabilities, sanitary evacuations and support to national citizens, especially between the Continent and the Archipelagos. It also emphasizes that the possibility of refueling in flight and combating forest fires will enable Portugal to "have dual-purpose aircraft (civilian and military) that respond to the country's permanent needs."

"The unique features of the KC-390 aircraft set a new standard for strategic military transport, hitherto only possible to secure with superior four-engined aircraft, with capabilities and capabilities."

These qualities were understood by the Council as "a solution that fully satisfies the requirements defined by the Portuguese State, as well as those required for participation in military operations that may result from alliances to which Portugal is a party."


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