The US State Department announced a potential Foreign Military Sale to Australia in a $350 million deal that will include defense services for future missile production.
The potential sale will include defense services for Standard Missile 6 Block I (SM-6) and Standard Missile 2 Block IIIC (SM-2 IIIC) missiles. The services include development, engineering, integration, testing, and other support services.
The State Department, calling Australia “one of our most important allies in the Western Pacific,” believes that the sale will “support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States.”
The office also said that “it is vital to the US national interest to assist our ally in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defense capability.”
About the US-Australia Relationship
The US and Australia have a long history of military cooperation, not only limited to arms sales.
Earlier this month, the Australian Defence Force and the United States Armed Forces agreed to co-develop the Precision Strike Missile Increment 2 program. The goal of the program is to increase the range and lethality of the surface-to-surface precision-strike guided missile.
In July, the US Air Force delivered two CH-47F Chinook helicopters to Australia in a gesture to strengthen their alliance.
Also in July, the US Army held a MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile test in Australia as part of joint military training.