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Airbus Helicopters hands over Indonesia's first EC725 for combat search and rescue missions

Mission equipment to be installed by PT Dirgantara Indonesia / Indo Defence 2014

(PresseBox) (Marignane, ) Airbus Helicopters has handed over the first of six EC725 rotorcraft acquired by Indonesia for combat search and rescue (CSAR) missions. Present at Airbus Helicopters' Marignane, France facility to accept the aircraft included members of the Indonesian Ministry of Defence, the Indonesian Air Force, as well as PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI). The 11-ton twin-engine helicopter will be delivered to the Air Force by mid-2015 after PTDI completes the mission equipment outfitting and customization at its Bandung, West Java facility.

"We are pleased to receive this first EC725 from Airbus Helicopters, which will allow us to complete it in the CSAR version to be handed over to the Indonesian Air Force," said PTDI President Budi Santoso. "We will continue to work closely with Airbus Helicopters to ensure the on-time delivery of the remaining units, as we anticipate an additional order from the Air Force for 10 more EC725s to complete its squadron of 16 helicopters."

When deployed by the Indonesian Air Force, the EC725 fleet will significantly enhance the military service's CSAR capabilities, benefitting from the proven performance and durability of Airbus Helicopters' latest member in its Super Puma helicopter family.

The mission equipment integration and completion of these six EC725 will mark a new step in Airbus Helicopters' well-established cooperation with PTDI, which includes a strategic industrial agreement and the Indonesian company's role in Airbus Helicopters' global supply chain.

The Indonesian Air Force has been a long-time operator of both the AS332 Super Puma and SA330 Puma rotorcraft, which were license-produced by PTDI since over 30 years ago. The partnership between PTDI and Airbus Helicopters has continued to grow, resulting in PTDI becoming a key supplier of tail booms and airframe assemblies of the EC225 and EC725 since 2008.

"Airbus Helicopters' cooperation with PT Dirgantara Indonesia is exemplary," said Philippe Monteux, Head of Region South East Asia & Pacific at Airbus Helicopters. "Our delivery of the first EC725, with significant parts being first built by PTDI, underscores how our partnership continues to evolve, meeting Indonesia's helicopter needs and further contributing to the progress of its aerospace sector."

The EC725 entered service in 2005 and has already been selected by the military forces of France, Brazil, Mexico, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. Its reliability and capabilities have been confirmed in crisis areas that include Lebanon, Afghanistan and Mali, while also supporting France's role during NATO-led operations in Libya. Missions performed by EC725s range from combat search and rescue to special operations, tactical transport and medical evacuation, along with a full range of maritime roles.

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Airbus Helicopters, formerly Eurocopter, is a division of Airbus Group, a global pioneer in aerospace and defense related services. Airbus Helicopters is the world's No. 1 helicopter manufacturer and employs more than 23,000 people worldwide. With 46 percent market share in civil and parapublic sectors, the company's fleet in service includes some 12,000 helicopters operated by more than 3,000 customers in approximately 150 countries. Airbus Helicopters' international presence is marked by its customer centers and participations in 21 countries, and its worldwide network of service centers, training facilities, distributors and certified agents. Airbus Helicopters' range of civil and military helicopters is the world's largest; its aircraft account for one third of the worldwide civil and parapublic fleet. The company's chief priority is to ensure the safe operation of its aircraft for the thousands of people who fly more than 3 million hours per year.