Italy generals eye possible $15 billion funding plus-up

Italian generals are eyeing a cash windfall of 12.8 billion euros, or U.S. $15 billion, to cover new Chinooks, drones and missiles. But there is one proviso — the buy could take years, or never arrive at all.

As part of Italy’s complex state financing, this year’s budget contains 10 billion euros for new defense programs and a 2.8 billion euro top-up for existing programs, all supplied on top of the regular defense budget.

The cash has been earmarked for purchases including four new CH-47F extended range helicopters for Italy’s Special Forces, a longer range version of the under-development Piaggio Hammerhead drone and MBDA CAMM-ER missiles due to replace Italy’s Aspide…

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