The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a possible foreign military sale (FMS) of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) missile segment enhancement (MSE) missiles to the Republic of Korea.

With an estimated cost of $501m, the possible deal covers the acquisition of 64 units of PAC-3 MSE missiles in addition to two PAC-MSE test missiles.

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Approved by the US State Department, the probable sale will also include the delivery of range and test programmes, training equipment, spare parts and personnel training.

In addition, the Republic of Korea has requested for the provision of the US Government contractor technical, engineering and logistics support services, and other associated elements of logistics and programme support.

As one of the closest allies in the US Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM) Theater, the country will use the PAC-3 MSE missile systems to enhance its missile defence capability, strengthen its territorial integrity and deter threats to ensure regional stability.

“With an estimated cost of $501m, the possible deal covers the acquisition of 64 units of PAC-3 MSE missiles in addition to two PAC-MSE test missiles.”

The FMS will help support the US foreign policy and national security objectives and address Korea’s legitimate security and defence requirements.

Once delivered, the new equipment will help improve the defensive capabilities of the country, enabling the military personnel to safeguard the country against hostile aggression and protect its allies who train and operate within the borders of South Korea.

With no difficulty in absorbing the system into its armed forces, the Korean military will be able to use the equipment and support without changing the basic military balance in the region.

Lockheed Martin will serve as the principal contractor for the proposed deal.

Being a follow-on variant of the PAC-3 missile, PAC-3 MSE interceptor is a high-velocity, hit-to-kill, surface-to-air system capable of intercepting and destroying tactical ballistic missiles (TBM) and air-breathing threats.