The U.S. State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale (FMS) of Gulfstream G550 Aircraft with ISR and EW capabilities to Australia. The estimated cost of the program is $1.3 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified the Congress of the possible sale on June 23, 2017.
The Australian government has requested the possible sale of up to five Gulfstream G-550 aircraft modified to integrate Airborne Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance, and Electronic Warfare (AISREW) mission systems, Global Positioning System (GPS) capability, secure communications, aircraft defensive systems; spares, including whole life costs of airborne and ground segments; aircraft modification and integration; ground systems for data processing and crew training; ground support equipment; publications and technical data; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services; flight test and certification; and other related elements of logistical and program support.
“This sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a major contributor to political stability, security, and economic development in the Western Pacific. Australia is an important non-NATO ally and partner that contributes significantly to peacekeeping and humanitarian operations around the world. It is vital to the U.S. national interest to assist our ally in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defense capability”, read the statement released by DSCA.
The proposed sale supports and complements the ongoing efforts of Australia to modernize its EW capability and increases interoperability between the U.S. Air Force and the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).
The statement released by DSCA also clarified that the proposed sale of this equipment does not alter the basic military balance in the region.
The prime contractors of the contract will be Greenville, TX based L3 Technologies. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.