The US State Department has approved the potential sale of Apache helicopters and spare parts for the Patriort missile system to Kuwait in two deals worth approximately $4.2 billion, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.
Kuwait's government has requested to buy 8 AH-64E Apache Longbow Attack Helicopters and upgrade 16 of their current AH-64D Apache Longbow Attack Helicopters to the AH-64E configuration, said the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), which manages the Foreign Military Sales program.
The sale of the helicopters and the related equipment have an estimated cost of $4 billion.
The Pentagon also approved in a seperate deal the sale of spare parts and training for their upgraded Patriot missile defense systems for an estimated cost of $200 million.
"The proposed sale of the AH-64E Apache helicopters will supplement and improve Kuwait's capability to meet current and future threats by enhancing Kuwait’s close air support, armed reconnaissance, and antitank warfare mission capabilities. Kuwait will have no difficulty absorbing these helicopters into its armed forces," the DSCA said in its statement.
It added: "The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region."
The DSCA delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on Tuesday. Despite the approval, the notification does not indicate that a contract has been signed or that negotiations have concluded.
The Pentagon said the weapons makers associated with the sales were Boeing Co, Lockheed Martin Corp, General Electric and Raytheon Technologies.
- With Reuters