Taiwan has signed two procurement contracts with the US, purchasing two weapons systems to boost its defense capabilities, the Ministry of National Defense said yesterday.
The contracts were signed by Taiwan’s defense mission in the US and the American Institute in Taiwan, the ministry said on its Web site.
The ministry provided limited details of the systems, saying that one is “a long-range precision-fire system,” while the other is “a batch of missiles.”
A source close to the matter told the Central News Agency that the two packages are the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) and the Harpoon Coastal Defense Systems.
Local defense experts have said that the systems would significantly boost Taiwan’s asymmetrical warfare capabilities.
The long-range precision fire system, to be stationed in Taoyuan, cost NT$9.62 billion (US$346.48 million), the ministry said, adding that the deal took effect on June 1.
The Army Command Headquarters is tasked with the system’s deployment, which is scheduled to be completed in 2027, it added.
The missiles, to be stationed in Kaohsiung, cost NT$39 billion, the ministry said, adding that the deal took effect on May 19.
The Navy Command Headquarters is tasked with the deployment, scheduled to be completed in 2028, it added.
The two arms packages were first announced by the US in October last year.
Washington said that the systems would improve Taiwan’s long-range counterstrike capability in the event of being attacked.
The packages, at the time estimated to cost a combined US$436.1 million, were reported to include 11 HIMARS M142 launchers, 64 Army Tactical Missile System M57 Unitary Missiles, seven M1152Al High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles, 11 M240B machine guns and 17 International Field Artillery Tactical Data Systems.
In October last year, the US announced that it would sell Taiwan 100 Harpoon coastal defense systems and related equipment, including 400 Harpoon Block II missiles, 100 launcher transport units and 25 radar trucks, at an estimated cost of US$2.37 billion.
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