USTBC Welcomes the Sale to Taiwan of 4 MQ-9B SeaGuardian Surveillance Drones

November 3, 2020

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Press Release:
The US-Taiwan Business Council Welcomes the Sale to Taiwan of 4 MQ-9B SeaGuardian Surveillance Drones

(Arlington, Virginia, November 3, 2020)

The US-Taiwan Business Council today welcomed the announcement of a possible Foreign Military Sale to Taiwan of 4 Weapons-Ready MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft and related equipment. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this proposed arms sale on November 3, 2020.

The published Congressional Notification (transmittal number 20-74) has a total expected program cost of US$600 million. The proposed sale consists of 4 Weapons-Ready MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft, 2 Fixed Ground Control Stations, 2 Mobile Ground Control Stations, and 14 Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigations Systems (EGI) with Selective Availability Anti-Spoofing Module. It also includes targeting and electronic surveillance measures systems, SeaVue patrol radars, data terminals, transponders, engines, secure communications and other equipment, spare and repair parts, training and engineering support, and other related elements of logistical and program support.

In response to this notification, the fifth involving Taiwan within the last two weeks, US-Taiwan Business Council President Rupert Hammond-Chambers said, “Taiwan continues to expand its existing intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) infrastructure. Adding the SeaGuardian platform will provide Taiwan with substantial new maritime surveillance capabilities. This is a crucial mission for the Taiwan Navy, particularly given the PLA’s aggressive incursions in regional waters and in the Taiwan Strait. We can expect Taiwan to further expand this capability in the coming years.

Hammond-Chambers added “Taiwan is hitting its stride in its efforts to modernize and develop its military capacity. SeaGuardian is a top-rated platform, and this sale reflects an adjustment by the Trump Administration to make available new capabilities – such as drones – to U.S. friends and allies to complicate PLA planning. American policy towards Taiwan should indeed include consideration of all platforms that enhance Taiwan’s defensive posture while also improving Northeast Asian security.

Source: See the DSCA website at https://www.dsca.mil/press-media/major-arms-sales

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