The helicopters had been withdrawn from service at the end of June

The sale of six SH-3D Sea King of the Spanish Navy to Peru for 600 euros

Yesterday, the decision of the Pedro Sánchez government to sell six Sikorsky SH-3D Sea King helicopters to the Peruvian Navy was revealed.

Impressive Spanish naval review 500 years after the first circumnavigation of the world
The Air Arm of the Spanish Navy in old photographs of the US National Archives

The Spanish SH-3Ds were withdrawn from service at the end of June

The reference of the Council of Ministers (is can read here) does not use the word "sale", but refers to it as "the disposal of six SH-3D Helicopters and their associated spare parts to the Republic of Peru, which are in a situation of low availability". Let us remember that these helicopters, which were part of the 5th Squadron, were decommissioned by the Spanish Navy at the end of June. The oldest of the SH-3 of the Spanish Navy was received in 1966, although the helicopters delivered to Peru will be more recent, since the oldest copies have already been decommissioned over the years .

One of the Agusta SH-3D Sea King of the Peruvian Navy. Made in Italy, Peru bought four in 1977, of which three are still active. They were equipped with anti-ship capability, being capable of launching Exocet missiles (Photo: César Mercado Alva / Aviación Peruana / Ministry of Defense of Peru).

The six helicopters and their spare parts will be sold to Peru for 600 euros

The most striking thing about this operation is that "the total amount of these disposals has been determined at 600.00 euros, a symbolic figure reached based on the clear logistical benefit it represents for the Navy , by facilitating a final destination for this material and in order, likewise, to strengthen the fluid and trusting relationship between the Navy and the Peruvian Navy". That is, that the sale is made at a price of 100 euros for each helicopter and its corresponding spare parts. The information provided by the government does not indicate how the shipment will be carried out, since that amount does not even cover what it would cost to send it on a ship.

One of the Peruvian Naval Aviation UH-3H Sa Kings on the flight deck of one of the three Carvajal Class frigates owned by the Peruvian Navy. These helicopters are used for transport and rescue tasks (Photo: Peruvian Navy).

The Spanish government justifies the operation and its amount with the following arguments: "This disposal does not put the operation of the Armed Forces at risk, as the entry into service of the planned units of the fleet of SH-60F helicopters. The value according to the inventory of the material in question is opposed by circumstances such as the obsolescence of the material, its high repair cost, transportation costs, limited marketing opportunities and, consequently, its reduced market value".

One of the UH-3H Sea King of the Peruvian Naval Aviation. Peru received six of these helicopters from the US Navy in 2010, and currently maintains two in service. The Peruvian UH-3Hs maintain the white and red decoration that the American UH-3Hs wore at the time of delivery (Photo: Peruvian Navy).

The current fleet of Sea Kings of the Naval Aviation of Peru

In 1977, Peruvian Naval Aviation acquired four Agusta SH-3D Sea King, manufactured in Italy, to equip its old cruiser BAP Aguirre (CH-84), decommissioned in 1999. Currently maintains three of these helicopters, with anti-ship capacity and equipped for rescue missions. Likewise, in 2010 the Peruvian Naval Aviation received six Sikorsky UH-3H Sea Kings from the US Navy, two of them destined to be "cannibalized" (as they say in aeronautical jargon) to supply spare parts to the other four, a common practice when it comes to older aircraft. Peru currently only maintains two of them in service, dedicated to transport and rescue missions. All the Sea Kings of the Peruvian Naval Aviation are operated by the Naval Air Squadron No. 22.

One of the KC-130H Hercules sold by Spain to Peru last year (Photo: Peruvian Air Force).

The recent sale of two Spanish KC-130H Hercules to Peru

It should be noted that this is the second sale of aircraft withdrawn to Peru by Spain recently. Last year, the Spanish Air Force entered two of its old KC-130H to the Peruvian Air Force. The tankers, the TK.10-10 (cn4871) and the TK.10-11 (cn4874), were delivered to Spain in 1980. In this case, the sale to Peru was made for 35 million dollars.


Main photo: Defensa y Aviación. One of the SH-3D Sea King of the Spanish Navy on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier "Juan Carlos I" during a visit to Vigo.

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