South American Countries Create Advisory Committee for Basic Trainer Aircraft Project
By Dialogo April 16, 2013
By the end of 2015, the member countries of the South American Defense Council (CDS/UNASUR) will have the first prototype of a basic trainer aircraft. On April 9, the project’s advisory committee, composed of representatives from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Uruguay and Venezuela, signed a joint statement for the prototype. When flight conditions are favorable, the airplane will be used to train Air Force pilots of member countries of UNASUR.
The full execution of the document, which established a committee to initiate negotiations for the new airplane, took place during a ceremony on April 9 at the UNASUR booth during the LAAD Defence & Security 2013 exhibition, in Rio de Janeiro.
“This is a developing pilot project that will soon be used in our region”, said Argentinean Defense Minister Arturo Puricelli.
In December of last year, Puricelli introduced the project to create the airplane during the 4th Meeting of the CDS/UNASUR held in Lima, Peru. The proposal was approved by the member nations of the Council and was integrated into the CDS Action Plan for 2013.
During a meeting, the Argentine minister and his Brazilian counterpart, Celso Amorim, signed the Declaration of Rio de Janeiro, which states that “defense relations between the two countries were restated during their business meeting.
The document emphasized the countries’ “advancement in developing the Primary-Basic Training Aircraft Project, known as UNASUR-I, under the Union of the South American Nations Defense Council’s Industrial Cooperation Action Plan for 2012.”
The ministers also reiterated “the strategic importance of projects such as UNASUR-I, which contribute to increased integration, complementation, and strengthening of the productive capabilities of both countries.”
In the declaration, Amorim also congratulated the decision of the Argentinean government to acquire 14 armored Guarani vehicles, developed and produced in Brazil. The dignitaries confirmed that the initiative promotes product design and integration projects between the two countries.
Furthermore, the ministers described the cooperation between the two respective Armed Forces as excellent. They also mentioned a new cooperation project in the field of military engineering, which will exchange experts from the military organizations of both countries.
In addition, Argentina expressed “satisfaction with Brazil’s interest in the Southern Cross Combined Joint Peacekeeping Force, along with the Armed Forces of Chile, to form an operational military nucleus, highly qualified and readily available, to reinforce the regional contribution to peacekeeping operations of the United Nations.”