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US to initiate deliveries of Taiwan's M1A2 Abrams tanks, HIMARS in 2024

The M1A2 Abrams MBTs – pictured above from a US Army exercise – are protected by composite armours, armed with a 120 mm smoothbore gun, and powered by a bespoke gas-turbine engine. (US Army)

The Republic of China Army (RoCA) will receive 38 M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks (MBTs), 11 M142 High-Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) and associated ammunition, and 81 ‘BGM‐71F tube-launched, optically tracked, wire-guided (TOW) 2B' anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) from the United States in 2024, a RoCA officer told Janes on 3 March.

The RoCA will receive 42 Abrams in 2025 and 28 in 2026, the officer said. “18 additional HIMARS will be delivered to the RoCA in 2026,” the officer added.

Taiwan signed a letter of offer and acceptance (LOA) with the US in December 2019 to procure 108 Abrams. Once inducted, the Abrams MBTs are expected to replace RoCA's ageing assets, including US-built M60A3 MBTs and locally built CM11 MBTs.

In addition, in June 2021 Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND) signed contracts with the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), which serves as Washington's de facto embassy in Taipei, to procure 11 M142 HIMARS launchers, 17 International Field Artillery Tactical Data Systems (IFATDSs), 64 M57 Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) unitary missiles, and other related equipment.

In May 2023 the MND signed a contract with the US to procure 18 additional M142 HIMARS launchers and associated ammunition.

Taiwan will receive TOW ATGMs as a part of the US arms sale package announced in December 2015, including the sale of 769 BGM-71F TOW 2B and 201 Javelin ATGMs to the island. The TOW 2B can strike targets at a maximum range of 4.5 km.

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