BAE Systems has been awarded a USD83.6 million contract to provide to Taiwan the “necessary material and technical engineering to build, integrate, test, and deliver” 36 AAV7A1 Assault Amphibious Vehicles.
The contract is for 30 AAVP7A1 personnel carriers, four AAVC7A1 command post vehicles and two AAVR7A1 recovery vehicles, according to a 22 June announcement by the US Department of Defense (DoD).
This deal, which involves Foreign Military Sales (FMS) under the Taipei Economic Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) – FMS case TW-P-SEQ – also includes support and test equipment, spares, publications, training, engineering services, logistics, and other technical support required.
All work will be performed in York, Pennsylvania, and is expected to be completed by 22 July, 2020, said the DoD, adding that this contract “was not competitively procured in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation 6.302-1(a)(2)(ii) - only one responsible source and no other supplies or services that will satisfy agency requirements”. The contracting authority is the US Marine Corps Systems Command in Quantico, Virginia.
Once delivered, the AAV7A1s are very likely to be used by the Republic of China Marine Corps (RoCMC), but will not be the first ones to be operated by the Corps. In 2003 Taiwan signed a contract for 54 ex-US Marine Corps AAV7A1-series vehicles that have begun replacing the LVTP5 series of amphibious fighting vehicles used by the RoCMC.
The latest contract announcement comes a few weeks after Taiwan said it welcomed a potential shift in policy by the United States’ government to facilitate military sales to the island on a case-by-case basis as opposed to the current approach of ‘bundling’ several defence deals together, as Jane’s reported.
The Ministry of National Defense (MND) in Taipei said in comments reported by the state-owned Central News Agency on 5 June that any US transition to approving FMS requests separately would improve its ability to plan and budget military modernisation requirements.
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