What is the BRP Alcaraz, our second warship, capable of?

MANILA - What is the Philippines’ second warship BRP Ramon Alcaraz capable of in terms of firepower? While it has no missile system, the former Hamilton-class cutter of the United States Coast Guard (USCG) has been equipped with two units of 25mm bushmaster gun system for defensive purposes. The Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., which manufactures missile systems, has offered a proposal to the Department of National Defense (DND) to arm the ship with a missile system, a Navy source told Read more [...]

Philippine navy to augment South China Sea presence with French patrol ship

MANILA - The Philippines said Saturday it is purchasing a surplus French Navy vessel to boost its forces in the South China Sea where it has an ongoing territorial dispute with China. The 26-year-old "La Tapageuse" vessel is likely to be the first of several French ships that will be acquired by the Philippine coastguard as it contends with increasingly assertive Chinese forces. The 54.8-metre (180-foot) patrol ship will cost six million Euros ($7.97 million) and is due to arrive in the country Read more [...]

PH eyes to purchase 2 light planes for territorial defense support

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of National Defense is looking to acquire two brand new light lift fixed wing aircraft worth about P800,000. DND Undersecretary for Bids and Awards Committeec said the aircraft must be able to “provide organic general support for territorial defense, internal peace and security plan, internal security operations, disaster response and national development.” The funds, which  will be sourced from the Armed Forces of the Philippines Modernization Act Read more [...]

‘WE’D LIKE THEM TO BE THERE’ | DFA chief Del Rosario backs US air patrols over Spratlys

MANILA, Philippines - Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario on Wednesday defended American air patrols over disputed territories in the West Philippine Sea, also known as the South China Sea, saying such overflights would help both to protect the country and boost the arbitration case it has filed before the United Nations against China. Del Rosario made the remarks after the Japanese news agency Kyodo reported Tuesday that classified Philippine documents confirmed that US P3C Orion aircraft Read more [...]

Anglo-Italian firm lone bidder for P3.4-B Air Force project

MANILA, Philippines - An Anglo-Italian firm was the lone bidder for the P3.4-billion project involving the purchase of eight Air Force attack helicopters. AugustaWestland, a company owned by Italy’s Finmeccanica, was the only one that joined the bidding for the helicopter acquisition project held last Wednesday. Three other firms bought bid documents for the project but did not participate in the bidding. The companies that bought bid documents but did not submit offers were Boeing, Eurocopter Read more [...]

Another Navy warship to arrive next week

MANILA, Philippines - A second warship acquired from the US is expected to arrive on Aug. 3. Navy spokesman Lieutenant Commander Gregory Fabic said the BRP Ramon Alcaraz is expected to arrive in Guam this weekend before sailing for the Philippines. “It is really a big boost to our capability since it will be deployed within the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines,” he said. “We are looking at BRP Ramon Alcaraz as a source of pride not only for us but also the Filipino people.” Fabic Read more [...]

Moody’s places PH under review, possible upgrade underway

MANILA -- Moody's Investors Service on Thursday placed its ratings on the Philippines under review for a possible upgrade. Moody's rates the country a notch below investment grade at Ba1 with a stable outlook. In a statement, Moody's said the move was made due to the Philippines' "recent track record of robust economic growth, stable and favorable government funding conditions, improving fiscal and debt dynamics, [and] political stability and a strengthened government policy mandate." "The Read more [...]