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US approves potential sale to Taiwan of Defense Systems and missiles, worth USD2.4 billion | Janes analysis

On the same day that China announced sanctions against several US companies selling weapons to Taiwan, the US State Department approved another potential multibillion-dollar Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to the island aimed at improving its capabilities to “counter or deter maritime aggressions, coastal blockades, and amphibious assaults”. The latest analysis on the potential sale follows – compiled by Gabriel Dominguez-Cespedes, Asia-Pacific editor of Janes Defence Weekly. 

The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced on 26 October the approval of a USD2.37 billion sale to Taiwan of up to 100 Boeing Harpoon Coastal Defense Systems (HCDSs) and up to 400 RGM-84L-4 Harpoon Block II medium-range, surface-launched, anti-ship missiles along with related equipment and support. 

According to Janes, the subsonic RGM-84L Harpoon Block II has a maximum range of 67 n miles (124.1km). 

The announcement comes amid increasing tensions between Beijing and Taipei over the status of Taiwan. The Chinese government sees the island as a breakaway province and has vowed to reunite it with the mainland.

In fact, a few hours before the DSCA notification the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) in Beijing had announced that it would impose sanctions on US firms involved in the sale of weapons to Taiwan following the US State Department approval on 21 October of USD1.8 billion worth of military equipment.

Among other things, the US State Department had approved the potential sale of 11 Lockheed Martin M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers, 64 Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMSs) M57 unitary missiles, 135 Boeing AGM-84H Standoff Land Attack Missile-Expanded Response (SLAM-ER) missiles, and six Collins Aerospace MS-110 multispectral airborne reconnaissance pods, along with related equipment, training, support, and services.


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