Australia boosts weapon purchase from US

The U.S. State Department has approved the sale of mobile rocket launchers to Australia.

The development comes at a time when Canberra is seeking to boost its military presence in the Indo-Pacific region, midst growing Chinese belligerence.

In a statement the Pentagon said, the State Department has approved several weapons sales worth $3.1 billion to allies, including helicopters to Egypt and missiles to the Netherlands.

The United States has also agreed to sell High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) launchers to Australia at an estimated cost of $385 million. Australia had requested to purchase 20 HIMARS and other equipment, said the Pentagon. The principal contractors for the same will be Lockheed Martin, L3Harris Corp and Chelton Inc.

The Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency has notified Congress of the sale.

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