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Thursday, December 24, 2009

U.S. firm wins contracts to produce Patriot system for Taiwan

U.S. defense manufacturer Raytheon Company said Wednesday that it has been awarded contracts worth a total of US$1.1 billion to produce new Patriot Air and Missile Defense System for Taiwan.

The awards cover ground-system hardware through an initial contract valued at US$965.6 million and an initial spares contract valued at US$134.4 million, the company said in a statement.

It said the new Patriot fire units will feature improved man-machine interface and reduced life-cycle costs and will be produced in Massachusetts, Texas and Alabama.

The items are part of an arms sale package approved by the administration of former U.S. President George W. Bush in late 2008.

Photo : air-and-space

In addition to 330 advanced capability Patriot (PAC-3) missiles, the deal also includes 30 Apache attack helicopters, 32 Harpoon submarine-launched missiles, 182 guided Javelin missile rounds and four E-2T anti-submarine plane system upgrades.

 Taiwan E-2T (Photo :

E-2T anti-submarine Photo : FAS.ORG

There have also been reports in Taiwan that the administration of President Barack Obama might soon announce more arms sales to Taiwan.

Asked about the issue in a regular press briefing, Taiwan's deputy representative to the United States, Tung Kuo-yu, said he could not confirm the reports.

However, Tung said he understands that inter-agency discussions are still going on within the Obama administration on whether to sell more weapons to Taiwan.

Tan Chih-lung, director-general of the Defense Mission of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States, said Washington has always kept its arms sales to Taiwan highly confidential and usually does not disclose related information until a couple of days before they are formally announced, mainly to prevent possible protests or interference from China. (Original News)

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