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US approves Paladin howitzer sale to Taiwan

M109A6 Paladin howitzer

The US State Department has approved a possible sale of of 155mm M109A6 Paladin medium self-propelled howitzer systems to Taiwan.

The sale of howitzers and related equipment has an estimated cost of $750 million and represents the first arms sale to Taiwan approved by the Biden administration.

Last year, the US gave its green light for the sale of High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems M142 launchers, SLAM-ER missiles, Harpoon Coastal Defense Systems (HCDS), MQ-9B remotely piloted aircraft, and heavy weight torpedoes.

For the first foreign military sale approved this year, Taiwan requested to buy 40 Paladins, five M88A2 Hercules vehicles, five M2 Chrysler Mount .50 caliber machine guns, and 1,698 multi-option, precision guidance kits (PGK).

Also included are M109A6/M992A2 overhaul, conversion and refurbishment services; GPS receivers, navigation systems, and personnel training, among other items.

“This proposed sale of M109A6 SPH will contribute to the modernization of the recipient’s self-propelled howitzer fleet, enhancing its ability to meet current and future threats. These systems will contribute to the recipient’s goal of updating its military capability while further enhancing interoperability with the United States and other allies. The recipient will have no difficulty absorbing these systems into its armed forces,” the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in an announcement.

Should a deal be finalized, the prime contractor for the Paladin howitzer sale would be BAE Systems. It should be noted that all of the quantities and cost estimates provided by DSCA at the time of the submission of a notification to Congress are subject to change.