Malta does not have conscription, and consequently, the Air Wing is manned by professionals. The main tasks are coastal patrol, communications, search and rescue and medical evacuation flights.
Aircraft Serial Numbers
All Maltese military aircraft were initially allocated civilian registrations on the Maltese civil aircraft register. For example, the single Agusta-Bell AB.206A was registered 9H-AAJ.
In May 2000, a new military serialling system was introduced. This comprised a four-digit serial number prefixed by the letters ‘AS’ for Air Squadron. The first two digits indicate the year of introduction into service and the second two being the overall sequence number. Thus Bulldog AS0020 was acquired in the year 2000 and was the 20th aircraft to be operated by Malta.
Coding system not used
None – Manufacturers designations used
Current Aircraft Inventory
All-Time Aircraft Used List
Aircraft NOT Used
One Eurocopter UH-72A Lakota was ordered from the US production line in 2008, but this order was deferred in April 2009 and eventually cancelled.
Aircraft Losses and Incidents
St Patrick’s Barracks, Luqa.
Malta has no defence ministry so the AFM reports directly to the Prime Minister. The AFM originally comprised 3 numbered Regiments, of which the second had the Air Squadron attached to it. The 2nd Regiment comprised Air Defence Artillery, Aviation and Maritime units. In October 2006 the 2nd Regiment was disbanded and its subordinate units given greater autonomy. The Air Squadron was enlarged into an Air Wing to take on more maritime security duties. It currently comprises a helicopter flight and a fixed-wing flight.
Current Order of Battle
Historical Orders of Battle
All-Time Flying Units List
Current Air Bases
All aircraft and helicopters are currently based at Luqa International Airport.
All-Time Air Bases Used List
The Helicopter Flight was initially based at St Patrick’s Barracks but later moved to Luqa. The British established a number of airfields around the country, and some may still be in civilian use.
Malta Air Bases Listing – to be added.
Aerospace Encyclopedia of World Air Forces (Aerospace, 1999)
World Air Power Journal No.5 p.146
World Air Power Journal No.9 p.22-23
World Air Power Journal No.10 p.18
Air Action No.37 p.30-31
Air Forces Monthly January 1997 p.23-25
Air International July 1996
Air Pictorial April 2002
2nd Regiment Armed Forces of Malta Unofficial Website (Password: St. Barbara)