Guyana Defence Force to Buy Two Dornier 228 Utility Aircrafts from India
Guyana Defence Force to Buy Two Dornier 228 Utility Aircrafts from India

Guyana Defence Force to Buy Two HAL Dornier 228 Utility Aircrafts from India

The President of Guyana, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, has agreed to the purchase of two Dornier 228 aircrafts from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Kanpur. The aircraft is a twin-engine turboprop, highly versatile multi-mission maritime patrol aircraft manufactured by HAL for the Indian military and coast guard. During his seven-day visit to India, the President spent nearly two and a half hours at the Transport Aircraft Division of HAL, where he interacted with the officers and saw the CG-767 Indian Coast Guard 18-seater Dornier aircraft and others. the purchase of Dornier 228 aircrafts to replace the Guyana Defence Force’s aged fleet

The Guyana Defence Force (GDF) is the military of Guyana, established in 1965. The Defence force air wing was formed in 1968 and was then renamed the Guyana Defence force air command in 1973. The GDF already has its own aircraft, registered under civil aviation rules and regulations, rather than military as is done in several other countries. The Guyana Defence Force currently operates 24 fixed-wing aircraft and 24 helicopters. If acquired, the two 19-seater Short Takeoff and Landing (STOL) planes would be used for the movement of troops and supplies to military bases across Guyana, assistance with maritime patrols, and VIP transportation.

Indian Coast Guard HAL Dornier 228 in Maritime Patrol Aircraft. (Photo Hindustan Aeronautics Limited)

The Dornier 228 is a twin-turboprop STOL utility aircraft, designed and first manufactured by Dornier GmbH (later DASA Dornier, Fairchild-Dornier) from 1981 until 1998. Two hundred and forty-five were built in Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany. In 1983, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) bought a production licence and manufactured another 125 aircraft in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India. In late 2017, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation issued a type certificate to the Hindustan 228. The aircraft was so far being manufactured under licence from RUAG for Indian defence forces and European markets would now be allowed to operate in India for commercial purposes.

The 228 made its public debut in 2020 at the Dubai Airshow. Alliance Air signed an agreement with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to lease two 17-seater Dornier 228 aircraft in September 2021. The HAL Dornier 228 had previously only been used by the Indian Armed Forces but was modified by HAL for commercial operations. Alliance Air deployed the aircraft on a new route connecting Dibrugarh, Assam and Pasighat, Arunachal Pradesh on 12 April 2022, becoming the first airline to use an Indian-made aircraft in civil aviation operations and the first commercial airline in the country to operate the Dornier 228 aircraft.