, After having cancelled in 2002 the acquisition of nine EC635T1 military light helicopters from Eurocopter company, for lack of certification of some weapon systems and for non-compliance with the delivery schedule, the Portuguese Ministry of Defence is again showing interest in the same model, which has since been certified for launching the TOW missile system.
However, Portuguese military sources say that now the Portuguese army requisites have been changed, and the only armament foreseen are 12.7mm and 20mm guns in pods produced by French company GIAT Industries. The decision to buy the French helicopter for the Portuguese army unit GALE or another one helicopter model (such as the AgustaWestland A109M Power, which has been promoted last year in Portugal), will be taken in January 2005 by the Ministry of defence, Dr. Paulo Sacadura Portas.
The nine EC635T1, which were already in Portugal, at OGMA's company facilities, to be equipped with specific equipment, were sent back to France and sold to the Jordan Air Force. At the time, Portuguese Air Force pilots tested the helicopter and found it wanting in relation to the requisites, but even so it was selected.
The Portuguese Army also looks forward to receiving in 2005/2006 the first of ten AgustaWestland/NH Industries NH90 TTH tactical transport helicopters, with Turbomeca RTM 322 engines, to equip with military light helicopter model, the Grupo de Avia