According to the German armed forces, Hungary is the first to join an international, but mainly military, air transport service.
Index spotted on the website of Bundeswehr that Hungary is the first country to become a partner of the new Luftwaffe Multinational Air Transport Unit (MNAU). In 2017, the German Luftwaffe ordered 40 Airbus A400M propeller-driven military transport aircraft. After that,
the German Federal Ministry of Defence proposed to establish a new, international air transport unit (MNAU).
“With the establishment of the executive group, the first proper positions have been formed at MNAU’s base in Wunstorf, which is an important milestone in the realisation of the multinational military air transport project. As the first officers of the Hungarian Air Force have been integrated into the project, the cooperation between the Hungarian and German forces have begun,” said Ingo Gerhartz, Lieutenant General of Luftwaffe, on the occasion of MNAU’s establishment.
It is rumoured that another ten Airbus A400M aircraft will join the unit’s ranks.
As Index wrote: this cooperation provides major benefits for all members of the MNAU, as they will not only be able to coordinate their flight operations, but they will also be able to save a significant amount of expenses and resources, not to mention that it also helps to protect the environment.
We wrote previously:
In 2018, Hungary ordered 44 Leopard 2A7+ battle tanks and 24 Panzerhaubitze 2000 (Pzh 2000) self-propelled guns from the German company, Krauss-Maffei Wegmann.
This September, Gáspár Maróth announced that the Hungarian Defence Force will order 218 Lynx-KF41 armoured fighting vehicles.
When implementing their coordinated flight operations, it is possible that German pilots will transport Hungarian cargo or vice versa, but it will also be possible for the partner states to use aircraft with their own insignia within the unit.
According to Index, this might raise the possibility that Hungary might purchase Airbus A400M military transport aircraft in the future.
Not only will partner countries have the option to transport cargo, but they could also refuel mid-air, which will significantly increase the range of their aircraft. The JAS 39 Gripen aircraft, which are in service in the Hungarian Air Force, have the necessary equipment for the manoeuvre, and some pilots have already received the required training, including actual air refuelling experience.