Airbus Military is likely to propose its aircraft range for the South African Air Force’s (SAAF) Project Saucepan requirement for a new maritime patrol and surveillance aircraft.

Airbus Military CE Domingo Ureña said: “I think we have the best product in the world and I believe we could win the programme if we are given the chance to compete.”

Project Saucepan is aimed to replace SAAF’s 68-year-old Douglas C47 Dakota aircraft, which is currently used for maritime surveillance.

The SAAF received its first C47s in 1943 and were deployed into service with 35 Squadron, based in Cape Town, to perform medium transport as well as maritime patrol duties, according to Defenceweb.