Ozair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 790 posts, RR: 1 Posted (2 years 10 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 5328 times:
The Australian Defence minister announced this morning that Australia has selected the SH-60R as the winner of the naval combat helicopter acquisition program AIR 9000 phase 8. The contract will be for 24 helicopters and is valued at approximately US$3 billion.
From the media release "The Australian Government has chosen the ‘Romeo’ helicopter because it represents the best value for money for taxpayers and was the lowest risk option.....The first two helicopters will arrive in mid-2014 for testing and evaluation with operations expected to commence in mid-2015."
Given the issues with the MRH-90 being integrated into Australian service as well as European issues it is no surprise that the SH-60R, an in service platform with a significant number of hours and an updated model to the current aircraft already operated by the RAN, was chosen.
IMO a good choice as Australia has had a terrible run with procurement programs of late and this off the shelf purchase is certainly the lowest risk.