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Taiwan engages US on missile sustainment

Taiwan has announced it will award a ‘missile engineering' contract to the United States. This will reportedly include sustainment of the island's Patriot air-defence system. (Lockheed Martin)

Taiwan has awarded the US a contract to sustain missile systems operated by the Republic of China Air Force (ROCAF). The deal – worth TWD2.5 billion (USD84 million) – comes amid Taiwanese efforts to bolster missile production capacity on the island in the face of growing tension with China.

The missile sustainment deal was announced by Taipei's contract tender portal on 11 August. According to the announcement, the ‘missile engineering' contract was awarded by Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND) to the American Institute in Taiwan – the US' de facto embassy on the island – through a restricted bidding process, without public solicitation.

The announcement said the contract, which commenced on 20 July and will conclude at the end of 2026, covers “missile engineering services and a field effectiveness evaluation”.

Taiwan's state-owned Central News Agency, citing a source with knowledge of the deal, reported that the contract will support the ROCAF's Lockheed Martin Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) air-defence systems.

The MND in Taipei did not confirm this, but in February, the US Department of State said it had approved a potential USD100 million Foreign Military Sales (FMS) to Taiwan to enhance the island's Patriot air-defence system, with Raytheon and Lockheed Martin selected as prime contractors.

The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said at the time that the proposed contract would run for five years and comprised “engineering services support, designed to sustain, maintain, and improve” Taiwan's Patriot systems.

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