Canadian Defense Minister Gordon O' Connor made a fourth announcement on Thursday on a huge military purchasing plan totaling 17.1 billion Canadian dollars (16.3 billion U.S. dollars) in a bid to update the military's equipment.
The government plans to spend 8.3 billion Canadian dollars (7.4 billion U.S. dollars) to buy 21 new aircraft for the military among other spending, said the minister in Trenton, Ontario.
The plan includes four strategic aircraft, which are designed to carry heavy cargo or large groups of people and 17 tactical aircraft to replace the military's current aging Hercules fleet.
This has been O'Connor's fourth-straight day of military spending announcements. On Wednesday, he unveiled a plan to spend at least 2 billion Canadian dollars (1.8 billion U.S. dollars) to purchase 16 military helicopters. On Tuesday, he outlined plans to purchase 2,300 new high-tech trucks, and on Monday, unveiled a plan to build three navy supply ships costing 2.1 billion Canadian dollars (1.9 billion U.S. dollars).
Besides outdated equipment, Canadian military is also facing the challenge of lack of personnel. According to a report released last week by the Senate national security and defense committee, while the actual number of military personnel stands at 64,000, the number needed is 90,000.