The proposed sale is set to support America’s foreign policy and national security objectives by helping to strengthen the US-Indian strategic ties…reports Asian Lite News
The US State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of India of MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of $3.99 billion, US Department of Defence (US DOD) said.
This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States by helping to strengthen the US-Indian strategic relationship and to improve the security of a major defence partner that continues to be an important force for political stability, peace, and economic progress in the Indo-Pacific and South Asia regions, the news release said.
The proposed sale will improve India’s capability to meet current and future threats by enabling unmanned surveillance and reconnaissance patrols in sea lanes of operation. India has demonstrated a commitment to modernising its military and will have no difficulty absorbing these articles and services into its armed forces, it added.
The Defence Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.
The Government of India has requested to buy 31 MQ-9B Sky Guardian aircraft; one 161 Embedded Global Positioning and Inertial Navigation Systems (EGIs); 35 L3 Rio Grande Communications Intelligence Sensor Suites; 170 AGM-114R Hellfire missiles; 16 M36E9 Hellfire Captive Air Training Missiles (CATM); 310 GBU-39B/B Laser Small Diameter Bombs (LSDB); and 8 GBU-39B/B LSDB Guided Test Vehicles (GTVs) with live fuzes, the US Department of Defence informed.
Also included are Certifiable Ground Control Stations; TPE-331-10-GD engines; M299 Hellfire missile launchers; KIV-77 cryptographic appliques and other Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) equipment; KOR-24A Small Tactical Terminals (STT); AN/SSQ-62F, AN/SSQ-53G, and AN/SSQ-36 sonobuoys; ADU- 891/E Adapter Group Test Sets; Common Munitions Built-In-Test (BIT) Reprogramming Equipment (CMBRE); GBU-39B/B tactical training rounds, Weapons Load Crew Trainers, and Reliability Assessment Vehicles-Instrumented; Portable Pre-flight/Post-flight Equipment (P3E); CCM-700A encryption devices.
It also include KY- 100M Narrowband/wideband terminals; KI-133 cryptographic units; AN/PYQ-10 Simple Key Loaders; Automatic Identification System (AIS) transponders; ROVER 6Si and TNR2x transceivers; MR6000 ultra high frequency (UHF) and very high frequency (VHF) radios; Selex SeaSpray Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) surveillance radars; HISAR-300 Radars; SNC 4500 Auto Electronic Surveillance Measures (ESM) Systems; SAGE 750 ESM systems; Due Regard Radars (DRR); MX-20 Electro-Optical Infrared (EO-IR) Laser Target Designators (LTDs); Ku-Band SATCOM GAASI Transportable Earth Stations (GATES); C-Band Line- of-Sight (LOS) Ground Data Terminals.
Also included are: AN/DPX-7 IFF transponders; Compact Multi-band Data Links (CMDL); initial spare and repair parts, consumables, accessories, and repair and return support; secure communications, precision navigation, and cryptographic equipment; munitions support and support equipment; testing and integration support and equipment; classified and unclassified software delivery and support; classified and unclassified publications and technical documentation; personnel training and training equipment; transportation support; warranties; studies and surveys; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical, and logistics support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support, according to the news release.
The estimated total cost is $3.99 billion.
The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region. The principal contractor will be General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Poway, CA. The purchaser typically requests offsets. Any offset agreement will be defined in negotiations between the purchaser and the contractor.
Implementation of this proposed sale will not require the assignment of any additional US Government or contractor representatives to India, the release concluded.
US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller shed light on the recently approved foreign military sale of MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft to India.
He said, “I cannot give a timeline. This was the initial step today. Notifying Congress of the exact timeline of the delivery is something that we will explore with the government of India over the coming months.”
Highlighting the significance of the deal, Miller emphasised, “Almost USD 4 billion sale of 31 MQ-9B Sky Guardian aircraft will provide India with enhanced maritime security and maritime domain awareness capability. It offers India outright ownership and a 16-fold increase in the number of aircraft as compared to their current lease.”
The Biden administration has today notified the US Congress of its intent to sell nearly 4 billion dollars worth of arms, comprising mainly MQ-9B drones armed with Hellfire missiles.
The defence security cooperation agency, which is an agency within the US Department of Defence, said in a press release on Thursday that the sale helps in strengthening the US-Indian Strategic Relationship.
It added that New Delhi continues to be an “important force for political stability, peace, and economic progress in the Indo-Pacific and South Asia region.”
“The US State Department has made a determination approving a possible foreign military sale to the Government of India of MQ-9B remotely piloted aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of USD 3.99 billion. The Defence Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification, notifying Congress of this possible sale today,” the Defence Security Cooperation Agency said in a statement. (ANI)