UK Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon has announced a six-year £48 million Apache helicopter training contract at the annual Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) Land Warfare Conference.
This investment in Apache air and ground crew will support around 70 jobs in Dorset, Hampshire and Suffolk with Aviation Training International Ltd. (ATIL). Around 700 Army personnel will go through the training scheme per year, including around 50 pilots and 400 ground crew.
While addressing the challenges which face today's armies, the Defence Secretary also announced new measures to meet global information and cyber threats by bolstering and reorganising the Army's Royal Corps of Signals and Intelligence Corps.
The Royal Signals will receive an additional regiment to enhance its cyber capabilities, so it can distribute information rapidly and effectively; while the Intelligence Corps will be organised to focus on counter-intelligence, security, and cultural understanding.
Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: "This £48 million contract will support UK jobs and provide world-class Apache training for our personnel. The Apache is a vital part of the British Army's fighting force that is helping to keep this country safe.
"We are also preparing our forces for the battlefields of tomorrow in an era of complex global challenges by ensuring our formidable Signals and Intelligence Corps are ready for the information warfare of the 21st Century.
"This investment is only possible thanks to a rising defence budget and a drive for efficiency and innovation which will help our Armed Forces stay at the cutting edge."