Updated: January 2002
During 2001, the Pentagon notified Congress of an estimated $18.884 billion in proposed, government-to-government, conventional arms transfer agreements with 22 countries.
The United States conducts government-to-government transfers through the Defense Department's Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. Not all notified sales result in final transactions. Under the 1976 Arms Export Control Act, Congress must be notified of any proposed sale of "major defense equipment," as defined on the U.S. Munitions List, that equals or exceeds $14 million; defense articles and services that are not defined as "major defense equipment" which total $50 million or more; and construction or design services amounting to or surpassing $200 million 1 Once notified, Congress has 30 calendar days (15 in the case of NATO members, Australia, Japan, and New Zealand) to block a sale by passing a joint resolution of disapproval, though it has never blocked a sale once formally notified.
Possible Pentagon arms sales to South Korea totaled $6.213 billion, approximately one-third the value of all the proposed deals in 2001. Of that amount, $1.615 billion is for weapons and other sub-systems related to Seoul's previously announced possible buy of at least 40 U.S. F-15K fighter aircraft, which South Korea has currently postponed because it claims all the offers it received are too expensive. Another $4 billion would go toward a possible buy of 36 attack helicopters, for which two U.S. companies are competing. (Boeing is offering the AH-64D Apache at $2.4 billion and Bell Helicopter Textron is offering the AH-1Z Super Cobra at $1.6 billion.)
Ranking second in possible deals, Poland is considering a $4.3 billion buy of 60 F-16 fighter aircraft. Poland may make a final decision on its fighter aircraft purchase during 2002. Other countries are also considering possible combat aircraft buys from the United States. Austria is weighing its options, including U.S. F-16s, for a purchase of 30 fighters, while Chile and Oman have moved closer toward finalizing their proposed F-16 fighter buys.
Aside from these major potential deals, the proposed FMS sales are largely upgrades, armaments, or support equipment for past and pending sales of U.S. weapon systems. During 2000, the Pentagon notified Congress of possible agreements totaling at least $11.6 billion.2
The Top Five Recipients of Proposed FMS Deals
From January 1 to December 31, 2001:
Munitions, sub-systems, and related equipment for possible sale of F-15K aircraft, including 105 AIM-9X Sidewinder missiles and 157 AIM-120C Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAMs)
45 AGM-84-H Standoff Land Attack Missiles-Expanded Response missile systems, 1 ATM-84-H Exercise Missile and related equipment for use on F-15K aircraft.
Cooperative Logistics Supply Support agreement for radar and missiles.
Three MK-41 Vertical Launch Systems for South Korean destroyers.
36 AH-1Z Super Cobra or AH-64D Apache attack helicopters with weapons and support equipment.
|44 F-16C/D fighter aircraft, 12 F-16A fighter aircraft, and 4 F-16B fighter aircraft, plus weapons, training, and support.|
|30 F-16C/D fighter aircraft, 3 spare F-16C/D engines, 4 AIM-120C AMRAAMs, 9 AIM-120C AMRAAM Air Vehicle Instrumented missiles, 20 AIM-9M-8/9 Sidewinder missiles, 15 AIM-9M-8/9 Sidewinder practice/training missiles, plus additional equipment, training and support.|
|12 F-16C/D fighter aircraft with engine and radar, 50 AIM-120C AMRAAMs, 10 AMRAAM training missiles, 100 AIM-9M-8/9 Sidewinder missiles, 10 Sidewinder training missiles, 80 AGM-65D/G Maverick missiles, plus additional equipment.|
201 M109A2/A3 155mm self-propelled howitzers, with spare parts.
240 wheeled bulldozers with spare parts, training, and support.
26 Extended Range-Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (ER-MLRS), 485 ER-MLRS rocket pods, 22 reduced range practice rocket pods with related software, equipment training, and support.
100 M1A1 Abrams tank kits and additional munitions, training, and support.
Assisted by Andy Diamond
1.The State Department is also required to report to Congress any commercial sales it approves of "major defense equipment" that amount to $14 million or more, defense articles and services that equal or exceed $50 million, and any items defined as "significant military equipment." As in the case of FMS sales, Congress can block the sale with a joint resolution of disapproval within 30 calendar days of notification (15 in the case of NATO members, Australia, Japan, and New Zealand). There are no official compilations of commercial agreement data and it is often incomplete and less precise than the data on government-to-government transactions (Grimmett, Richard F. Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations, 1993-2000, Washington D.C.: The Library of Congress, p. 15). The annual Section 655 report, prepared by the State Department and Defense Department for Congress, details commercial licenses approved, but states have four years to act under the licenses, and there is no current reporting requirement for actual deliveries after the initial license wins approval. However, beginning in fiscal year 2001, U.S. exporters are required to report on actual commercial transfers within 15 days of shipment. The State Department's Office of Defense Trade Controls has final responsibility for license applications for commercial defense trade exports and all issues related to defense trade compliance, enforcement, and reporting.
2. A proposed German buy of HARM missiles was estimated at $50 million or $250 million depending on whether Germany acquires the B or C model. In addition, no value or quantity was declared for Australia's possible purchase of AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles, but notifications are required for sales equaling or exceeding $14 million. For the purpose of this fact sheet, the minimum values of $50 million for the proposed German missile buy and $14 million for the possible Australian acquisition were assumed in calculating the total value of proposed U.S. FMS sales during the period.
Sources: Defense Security Cooperation Agency, Department of State, and Arms Control Association