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US Awards Boeing $500 Million Taiwan Harpoon Contract

The US Naval Air Systems Command has awarded Boeing a $498 million Harpoon Coastal Defense System (HCDS) contract for Taiwan.

The contract runs through December 2028 and includes “100 launcher transporter units, 25 radar units, and HCDS training equipment.”

It comes six months after Boeing won a $220 million Taiwan HCDS configuration contract through 2023.

Sea-Skimming Cruise Missile

The system is a land-based version of the Harpoon Block II anti-ship missile, designed to strike “coastal defense sites, surface-to-air missile sites, exposed aircraft, port/industrial facilities and ships in port.”

The missile features “active radar guidance, low-level, sea-skimming cruise trajectory, terminal mode sea-skim or pop-up maneuvers,” and a maximum range of 120.7 kilometers (75 miles). 

US Weapons Assistance

Since assuming office in January 2021, the Biden administration has approved close to $2 billion in weapon sales to Taiwan amid rising tensions between the island territory and China.

The People’s Liberation Army Air Force committed a series of Taiwanese air space violations last year.

In June, the Taiwanese government signed contracts worth $1.75 billion, reportedly including Lockheed Martin M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System launchers and the HCDSs. 

Taiwan to Double Missile Production 

In February this year, the US approved the sale of air and missile defense system equipment and services worth $100 million to Taiwan.

The island territory announced recently that it would double its annual missile production capacity, including the development of “Wan Chien air-to-ground missiles, Hsiung Feng IIE missiles, and the long-range Hsiung Sheng land-attack missile, reportedly capable of reaching China.”

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