US approves $120m sale to maintain Taiwanese warships


TAIPEI, June 9 (Reuters) – The United States has approved a possible sale of $120 million in parts to help Taiwan maintain its warships, which the island’s defense ministry says would help ensuring combat readiness in the face of China’s “frequent activities” near the island. .

The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency said it issued the required certification notifying Congress of the State Department’s approval for the sale, which was requested by the de facto Taiwan Embassy in Washington.

He said the sale covered unclassified spare and repair parts for vessels and vessel systems, technical logistics assistance, and technical and logistical support from US government officials and contractors.

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“The proposed sale will help maintain the recipient’s fleet of surface vessels, enhancing its ability to meet current and future threats,” the agency said in a statement, adding that the parts would be sourced from “suppliers and/or from approved suppliers to the US Navy”. U.S. Navy Stock”.

Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said Thursday that the deal should come into effect within a month and thanked Washington for its support in helping Taiwan protect itself.

“Given the recent frequent activity of Chinese warships in the sea and airspace around our country, the ship parts that the United States has agreed to sell will help maintain the proper equipment and consumption of our warships and to meet actual combat readiness tasks,” he said.

Neither side gave details of which coins Taiwan would receive.

Most of Taiwan’s major warships are made or designed by the United States.

The democratically-ruled island has complained about repeated Chinese air force missions into its air defense zone, part of what Washington sees as Beijing’s effort to pressure Taipei to he accepts his sovereignty.

The Chinese Navy is also carrying out increasingly regular missions near Taiwan.

The United States, like most countries, has no official relations with Taiwan, but Washington is its biggest supporter and is bound by law to provide it with the means to defend itself.

Successive U.S. administrations have advocated the sale to Taiwan of inexpensive, mobile, and resilient — or “asymmetric” — weapons that could survive any initial onslaught from China’s larger military. Read more

The US-Taiwan Business Council, which counts defense contractors among its members, welcomed the latest clearance but accused President Joe Biden’s administration of undertaking ‘the most significant reduction in aid US-Taiwanese security” since 1979.

“There appears to be little to no US support now for substantial Taiwanese force modernization efforts, so we should expect to see primarily sustainment and munitions programs for the remainder of the term (or terms) of President Biden,” Council Chairman Rupert Hammond-Chambers said. said in a statement.

The Taiwanese military risked seeing “the loss of infrastructure, the depletion of operational experience and the loss of decades of expertise”, he said.

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Reporting by Ben Blanchard and Michael Martina; Editing by Robert Birsel and Leslie Adler

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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