Philippines president says he wants to cancel $233M deal to buy Canadian helicopters
Phillippines President Rodrigo Duterte says he wants to cancel the $233-million deal to buy 16 helicopters from Canada, just days after Ottawa ordered a review of the sale.
"I want to tell the armed forces to cut the deal ... and somehow we will look for another supplier. We respect the stand of Canada," he said during a media briefing Friday morning.
The Liberal government had defended the deal, which is being facilitated by the Canadian Commercial Corp., arguing the Montreal-built Bell helicopters would be used during search-and-rescue missions and disaster relief.
But International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne announced Wednesday he had ordered a review after a senior member of the Philippine military said the aircraft would also be used in "internal security operations."