Air Transportation: Everyone Into The Pool

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February 18, 2008: Embarrassed by their inability to provide sufficient transport aircraft and helicopters for military operations in Afghanistan and Africa, the European Union (EU) are negotiating a pool arrangement. This would entail EU nations with AN400Ms transports on order (that's over 180 aircraft), committing some, or all, of them to a pool, that any member could draw on for operations. The use of these aircraft would be paid for through a lease type arrangement. Since NATO members use standard protocols for aircraft crews, the pool users would get pilots who would fit right in. A similar pool is proposed for transport helicopters. Many NATO members already possess C-130s, which could be pooled right away. While the C-130 can haul 20 tons, the A400M 37 tons, but the first one won't be delivered until next year.

 


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