Long-haul twin-engined freight and passenger aircraft
Since many years the Belgian Air Force operated two Boeing 727 airliners for mid-range transport of personnel and freight. Due to the ever-growing transport demands for Belgian military personnel and equipment on missions abroad the need arose for a larger and longer legged airliner. As budgetary restrictions did not permit the acquisition of new machines, two second hand Airbus A310-222 aircraft were obtained in 1997 from Singapore Airlines. Being able to carry 200 passengers and 11 tons of cargo or 140 passengers an 24 tons of freight, both A310’s provided a major increase in transport capability for the Belgian Air Force. As the ageing aircraft suffered from frequent engine and component break-downs the Belgian Government decided in November 2009 to replaced both A310’s by a single Airbus A330-300 obtained through a leasing contract.