The US State Department has authorised two significant sales to Taiwan, worth $440.2m.

The deals include the purchase of 30mm ammunition and a blanket order Cooperative Logistics Supply Support Arrangement (CLSSA) Foreign Military Sales Order II (FMSO II), aimed at enhancing Taiwan’s defensive capabilities and supporting its ongoing efforts to modernise its armed forces.

A race to boost defensive capabilities

In a notable move, the US State Department has approved the sale of 30mm Ammunition and related equipment to Taiwan, amounting to an estimated cost of $332.2m. The package includes various unclassified 30mm ammunition, such as high explosive incendiary-tracer, multi-purpose, and training rounds.

Additionally, engineering technical services, other technical services, and logistic and program support elements are included in the proposed sale.

The acquisition of this ammunition will aid the island’s ongoing modernisation efforts, enhancing its armed forces’ defensive capabilities as it faces a growing threat from China. It will contribute to sustaining the recipient’s CM34 Armored Vehicles and foster improved interoperability with the United States.

According to GlobalData’s “Taiwan Defence Market 2023-2028” report, in February 2022, the US approved a $100m Patriot missile support deal, and they approved the request to upgrade Taiwan’s fleet of M60A3 Main Battle Tanks from 2022 onwards, which General Dynamics will manufacture.

In October 2020, the US approved Taiwan’s request for Lockheed Martin HIMRAS rocket launchers, Boeing AGM-84H SLAM-ER missiles, and Raytheon MS-110 sensor pods worth $1.8bn.

The principal contractor responsible for the AB44 ammunition will be Alliant Techsystems Operations LLC, while General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems – Simuni will be the main contractor for the AB51 and AA90 ammunition.

Enhancing Logistics Support with CLSSA FMSO II

Further emphasising the commitment to Taiwan’s defence, the State Department has authorised a potential sale of a Blanket Order Cooperative Logistics Supply Support Arrangement (CLSSA) Foreign Military Sales Order II (FMSO II) to Taiwan.

Valued at an estimated cost of $108m, this deal aims to support Taiwan’s modernisation efforts by providing spare and repair parts for wheeled vehicles, weapons, and other program support elements.

The acquisition of the CLSSA FMSO II will strengthen Taiwan’s ability to meet current and future threats, ensuring the sustainment of their vehicles, small arms, combat weapon systems, and logistical support items.

Supporting Taiwan’s national security interests in the face of China

GlobalData’s “US Defence Market 2022-2027” report states that China has threatened Taiwan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The US has long supported the Taiwanese in their fight against China’s efforts to annex the state.

The report continues to outline the US’s commitment to ensuring Taiwan remains independent and upholds a close military relationship. In mid-September 2022, the US Senate approved a bill to finance weapon exports to Taiwan for the first time. This will provide Taiwan with weaponry valued at $4.5 billion over the next four years.

The approval of these deals shows the United States’ commitment to supporting Taiwan’s efforts in modernising its armed forces, bolstering its defensive capabilities, and promoting regional stability in the face of China’s consistent threats to Taiwan’s sovereignty.