US approves sale of military communications system to Taiwan

8 December 2020 (Last Updated December 8th, 2020 12:26)

The US is set to sell a military communications system and associated equipment to Taiwan as the outgoing Trump administration steps up support for the island.

US approves sale of military communications system to Taiwan
The US State Department has approved a possible foreign military sale of a Field Information Communications System (FICS) and related equipment to Taiwan. Credit: Amber Clay from Pixabay.

The US is set to sell a military communications system and associated equipment to Taiwan as the outgoing Trump administration steps up support for the island.

The State Department has approved a possible $280m foreign military sale of a Field Information Communications System (FICS) and related equipment to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO).

Defense Security Cooperation Agency has notified the US Congress about the decision.

The move comes after TECRO requested to procure FICS comprising 154 Communications Nodes (CN) with S-788 Type III shelter, 24 Communication Relays with S-788 Type III shelter, eight Network Management Systems (NMS) with S-788 Type III shelter, Basic Issue Items (BII) and programme management support.

The deal will also include verification testing, system technical support, delivery of spare and repair parts, communication support equipment and integration, tools and test equipment, training, repair, technical and logistics support services.

The contractor for the deal is being determined through an open competition.

In a statement, Defense Security Cooperation Agency said that the addition of the new equipment will help the recipient in modernising its military communication capability aligned with their mission and operational needs.

It also added that the proposed sale will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

The move is likely to upset China, which considers Taiwan as one of its provinces and strongly opposes any form of military support to the island.

Recently, the US moved forward with several arms sales packages for Taiwan, including approving the sale of weapons-ready MQ-9B remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) and AGM-84H standoff land attack missile expanded response (SLAM-ER) Missiles.