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Canada to spend C$13.8 billion to replace defense training aircraft, support vehicles

FILE PHOTO: Canada's PM Trudeau attends an event in Caraquet, northern New Brunswick

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada announced on Monday defense contracts worth about C$13.8 billion ($10.1 billion) for 70 training aircraft and 1,500 trucks to replace aging fleets currently used by the armed forces.

SkyAlyne Canada, a partnership between CAE and KF Aerospace, was awarded a 25-year contract valued at C$11.2 billion for the aircraft which are expected to be used for training from spring 2029, Canada's defense ministry said in a statement.

The deal with SkyAlyne includes classroom instructions, simulator and flight training, and other related services. It replaces contracts including one with CAE set to expire in 2028.

"This particular investment will bolster our ability to train a sufficient number of qualified aircrews to meet our operational requirements," the ministry said.

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Canada also announced an investment of up to C$2.58 billion to procure and maintain a new fleet of logistics vehicles for the army.

The contracts for logistics vehicles - awarded to a joint venture between General Dynamics Land Systems and Marshall Canada - will provide the military with a fleet of more than 1,000 light trucks and approximately 500 heavy trucks, as well as associated equipment.

Canada, under U.S. pressure to boost defense spending, pledged billions more In April for the armed forces and said military expenditures would be closer to a NATO target by 2030.

($1 = 1.3693 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Ismail Shakil and David Ljunggren in Ottawa; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)