The US Department of State has approved a possible USD313.9 million Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to South Korea of a further batch of Raytheon Standard Missile-2 Medium Range (SM-2MR) Block IIIB (RIM-66M-5) surface-to-air missiles along with related equipment and services, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said in a 17 May statement.
Seoul had requested to buy up to 94 additional SM-2MR Block IIIBs and 12 MK 97 MOD 0 guidance sections for the missile, said the agency. Also included in the potential sale, which still needs to be approved by the US Congress, are technical assistance, training and training equipment, publication and technical data, and other related elements of logistics and programme support.
"The proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States by meeting the legitimate security and defence needs of one of the closest allies in the INDOPACOM [Indo-Pacific Command] Theatre", said the DSCA, pointing out that the move will not only provide a defensive capability but also "enhance interoperability with US and other allied forces".
The prime contractor would be Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, Arizona, said the agency, adding that there are no known offset arrangements proposed in connection with the potential sale.
The Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN) intends to use the missiles to supplement its existing inventory. In May 2009 the US State Department approved a USD170 million sale to South Korea of SM-2 Block IIIAs along with related equipment and support, and in July 2016 it approved the sale of a further batch of these missiles, including related containers, worth up to USD65 million.
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