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Saturday, October 21, 2023

PB-PAFBAC-092-24 Carbine, 5.56mm M4 Acquisition Project of the Philippine Air Force

A requirement for new 5.56mm assault rifles was raised by the Philippine Air Force to meet the requirements of the 710th Special Operations Wing.

This resource page discusses the Carbine, 5.56mm M4 Acquisition Project of the Philippine Army, specifically the project raised in 2023 but funded by allocations for 2024.

An M4-type rifle used by the US Marine Corps for reference only. Photo credits to Army Times.

Project Summary:

PB-PAFBAC-092-24 Carbine, 5.56mm M4 Acquisition Project of the Philippine Air Force:

Note: Edited as of 02 February 2024.

* End User: Philippine Air Force (710th Special Operations Wing)

* Quantity: 3,500 units

* Modernization Phase: GAA 2024 Funding for the Philippine Air Force

* Project ABC: Php187,950.000.00

* Acquisition Mode: Public Bidding

* Source of Funding: GAA 2024 Funds for the Philippine Air Force

* SARO Release: Not applicable

* Winning Proponent: Dasan Machineries Co. Ltd.

* Product for Delivery: Dasan DSAR15 5.56mm assault rifle

* Contract Price:

* Residual Difference (Savings): Php34,856,220.00

* First post by MaxDefense: 21 October 2023 (this post)

* MaxDefense Searching Hashtag:

* Status: Requirement for 3,500 new 5.56mm M4-type carbines, to be delivered within 120 days from release of Notice to Proceed. Bidding was raised on 19 October 2023 with SOBE tentatively scheduled on 07 November 2023, moved to 01 December 2023. Notice of Award was made in favour of Dasan Machineries Co. Ltd. released on 05 January 2024.

The SIG Sauer SIGM400 Pro in 14.5" barrel without suppressor. Photo credits to SIG Sauer USA's website.


The Philippine Air Force has raised a requirement for 3,500 new 5.56mm M4 type carbines, which we believed would be allocated to the different units of the service, but with higher emphasis to the 710th Special Operations Wing. 

According to the tender documents, the delivery is required within 120 days from release of Notice to Proceed (NTP). If the first bidding attempt succeeds, we estimate that the rifles will all be delivered by 2nd quarter of 2024. Compared to the Philippine Army requirements for similar rifles, the PAF has a quicker delivery requirement which could be a reason for manufacturers/suppliers to back-out of the project.

The technical requirements have been released with the following details:

Technical Specifications as per Tender Bid Documents, taken from PAF Bid Documents.

The rifle required should have Direct Gas Impingement System (DGIS) and a barrel length similar to the M4A1, which is around 14.5". It also requires a quad rail interface system, retractable butt stock assembly, an ambidextrous selector lever and magazine release button, and dimensions with a maximum length of 900 milometers with buttstock fully retracted, and an overall weight without magazine of 3.6 kilograms. 

Performance characteristics include a cyclic rate of fire between 650 to 970 rounds per minute.

The requirements aside for some small differences like inclusions and packing are quite similar to the tender for Carbine, 5.56mm AR15-type Carbine for the Philippine Army, which is happening concurrently with this tender.

This means we could expect the same tenderers for this project as well as the one for the Philippine Army. 

Recent procurements of AR-15 type rifles were with DGIS systems, of which SIG Sauer's SIG M400 Pro and Taurus Armas' T4 rifles have been delivered to the Philippine Army to replace the M16A1 rifle, and the same line of thought could have been made for this requirement for the Philippine Air Force.

The SIG M400 SBR, although the Philippine Army ordered the one with longer 14.5" barrel. Photo credits to Ricardo Torres @ Pinterest.

The Taurus T4 5.56x45mm rifle, which is based on the AR-15 design. Photo taken from Pinterest.

In previous tenders for the Philippine Army, among those that participated in the tender or at least made its interest know are SIG Sauer (represented by Intrade Asia Pacific), Brazil's Taurus Armas (represented by Trust Trade), Israel's Emtan (represented by Armscor Global Defense), South Korea's Dasan (represented by United Defense Manufacturing Corp.), and Daniel Defense (represented by Nashe Enterprises) have participated and submitted in other similar tenders for the Philippine Army and Philippine Marine Corps, and they are expected to participate again in this tender.

 The Dasan DSAR15 rifle was previously submitted in a similar tender for the Philippine Marine Corps by South Korea's Dasan Machineries' local representative UDMC. Photo credits to Dasan.

Similar to our analysis on the Philippine Army's tender, expect issues on Emtan Karmiel especially with the war between Israel and Hamas might prevent the company from delivering rifles at a very short notice.

There is also a very interesting component on the tender, wherein the PAF has included additional items for delivery should a pre-delivery inspection overseas by at least 5 PAF personnel cannot be made due to reasons (ie. COVID, etc). This includes:

* 200 units of Red Dot Reflex Sights (with an expected value of Php1,400,000.00),
* 2 units Base Radio Dual Band (with an expected value of Php32,000.00),
* 10 units Military-grade Weather Proof Two-Way Radios (with an expected value of Php60,000.00),
* 4 units of Electronic Shot Timer with Sensor Buzzer (with an expected value of Php64,000.00).

Also, should the PAF supply the ammunition for the performance testing requirements, the winning supplier is also asked to offset with the following:

* 650 units of Red Dot Reflex Sights,
* 10 units of Military Grade Long-Range Two-Way Radios,
* 2 sets of Dual Band Base Radios.

The PAF appears to understand that the short delivery lead time they required may pose an issue especially for preparing for sending PAF personnel overseas to personally witness the pre-acceptance and pre-delivery inspections, which may include the performance tests.

It is possible that the PAF may allow the performance tests to be done in the Philippines with PAF supervision and using PAF ammunition, as long as the supplier will offset the ammunition cost with the items mentioned above.

U P D A T E S:

02 February 2024:

The PhilGEPS government procurement website has posted that the PAF has released the Notice of Award last 05 January 202 in favour of South Korean company Dasan Macinery Co. Ltd.

Dasan is locally represented in the Philippines by United Defense Manufacturing Corp. and is believed to have offered the DSAR15 5.56mm carbine.

So far no Contract and Notice to Proceed has been released.


First edit and release: 21 October 2023
Copyright MaxDefense Philippines / Philippine Defense Resource.

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