Taipei, 27 October 2020 (dpa/MIA) – Taiwan‘s government thanked the United States on Tuesday for its plans to sell Taiwan a “coastal defense cruise missile” system with 100 Harpoon anti-ship missiles for 2.37 billion dollars.
Presidential spokesman Xavier Chang said Taipei expressed “sincere gratitude” to the US after the official notification of the sale to Congress was issued by the US State Department.
The package is the fourth sale of arms to Taiwan by the Trump administration, according to a statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Tuesday morning.
The ministry said the purchase will help Taiwan modernize its military capability to cope with “China’s military expansionism and provocation” and thereby “maintain regional peace and stability.”
In late May, Vice Defense Minister Chang Che-ping confirmed to legislators Taiwan sought to purchase the Boeing-made mobile coastal defense missile system from the US along with Harpoons to boost anti-ship defenses, state-run Central News Agency (CNA) reported.
Earlier this month, Washington announced plans to sell Taiwan an advanced artillery rocket system, long-range air-to-ground missiles and external sensor pods for F-16 jet fighters.
Tensions have risen over numerous incursions of Chinese military into Taiwanese airspace and territorial waters. On Monday a Chinese air force Y-8 reconnaissance aircraft transgressed the southwest corner of Taiwan‘s air defense identification zone.
Taiwan has had an independent government since 1949, but China considers the democratic island part of its territory.