MD 530F helicopters will bolster Latvia’s air capabilities for executing close-range air operations against enemy targets, providing air support for combat search and rescue missions, conducting tactical reconnaissance, and facilitating transport operations, according to the Latvian Ministry of Defence.
MD 530F helicopters can be equipped with weaponry if necessary. However, they will primarily serve training purposes during peacetime, the Ministry emphasized.
The Ministry noted that Latvia anticipates receiving a comprehensive cost proposal from the manufacturer in the first half of the following year, at which point specific delivery terms can be agreed upon. No details regarding cost or timelines were provided in the release.
In a prior procurement, Latvia acquired four UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters to replace outdated Soviet-era Mi-17 aircraft, which were subsequently donated to Ukraine.
MD Helicopters, the manufacturer of the MD 530F, describes it as a versatile, single-engine, single-pilot-capable aircraft equipped with five blades, four-passenger capacity, designed to meet the most demanding operational requirements in high-temperature, high-altitude environments.