US approves Taiwan Patriot III missile recertification request

The mooted sale will help nation modernize armed forces, maintain credible defensive capability

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Patriot III missile system (Pixabay photo)

Patriot III missile system (Pixabay photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The U.S. State Department has approved a request from Taiwan to recertify its Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missiles for an estimated cost of US$620 million.

According to a press release from the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), the recertification package includes replacement of PAC-3 components that are close to expiration; test and repair of missile capabilities, including Stockpile Reliability Testing (SRT); spare parts for ground support equipment, and other logistical support. The primary contractor for the sale will be Lockheed Martin.

The arms sale is based on the Taiwan Relations Act and will help the country modernize its armed forces and maintain a credible defensive capability. It is in line with U.S. national, economic, and security interests, the press release stated, adding the proposed sale will improve Taiwan’s security and help maintain political stability, military balance, and economic progress in the region.

The package will help sustain Taiwan’s missile density and ensure readiness for air operations in addition to bolstering the country’s deterrent capabilities against regional threats and strengthening homeland defense, DSCA said. It also added the proposed sale will not alter the military balance in the region.

According to the DSCA, the announcement does not mark the finalization of the recertification package but rather approval of the potential sale. In May, the U.S. also approved a possible sale of 18 MK-38 Mod 6 Advanced Technology heavyweight torpedoes at a cost of US$180 million to Taiwan.