Our Bureau
02:15 PM, May 14, 2014

The US State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to Australia for AIM 9X-2 Sidewinder missiles and associated equipment worth $534 million.

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on May 13, 2014. 

The Government of Australia has requested a possible sale of up to 350 AIM-9X-2 Sidewinder Tactical Missiles, 35 AIM-9X Special Air Training Missiles (NATMs), 95 AIM-9X-2 Captive Air Training Missiles (CATMs), 22 AIM-9X-2 Tactical Guidance Units, 19 CATM-9X-2 Guidance Units, 3 DATM-9X, containers, test sets and support equipment, spare and repair parts, publications and technical documents, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. Government and contractor technical assistance, and other related elements of logistics and program support. The estimated cost is $534 million. 

Australia is an important ally in the Western Pacific that contributes significantly to ensuring peace and stability in the region. Australia’s efforts in peacekeeping and humanitarian operations have made a significant impact on regional, political and economic stability and have served U.S. national security interests. 

This proposed sale will improve the Royal Australian Air Force’s (RAAF) air to air capability and ability to defend its nation and cooperate with allied air forces. These missiles will be used on the RAAF’s F/A-18 aircraft (and eventually F-35 aircraft) and will maintain the RAAF’s air-to-air capability to defend its extensive coastlines against future threats. The proposed sale will enhance RAAF’s ability to operate with coalition forces in bilateral and multilateral exercises and potential air defense operations. Australia will have no difficulty absorbing these missiles into its armed forces. 

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region. 

The principal contractor will be Raytheon Missile Systems Company in Tucson, Arizona. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale. 

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