US State Dept. proposes $343 million C-17 support contract with Kuwait

The US State Department announced Friday it has approved a possible foreign military sale to the government of Kuwait for continuation of the C-17 logistics support services and equipment.

Airman 1st Class Steven Arroyo-Rivera, 437th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, directs a C-17 Globemaster III on the flightline at Joint Base Charleston, S.C. The C-17’s airlift capabilities are used to deploy U.S. armed forces anywhere in the world within hours. Additionally the C-17’s help sustain troops in conflict, humanitarian, airlift, and airdrop efforts.

The contract, which requires approval from Congress before being finalized, is said to be worth an estimated $342.6 million and would meet a request from Kuwait for three years — with an option for an additional two years of support — for two Boeing C-17 Globemaster III military transportation aircraft. The contract would also include access into the Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Program or GISP.

The GISP is an all-encompassing program that would provide Kuwait with contractor support, upgraded modifications, personnel and equipment training and access to all technical orders and publications among other contract benefits. Congress was notified of the proposed contract on Thursday.

The U.S. national security apparatus and elected officials believe exporting defense systems to allies and partner nations helps achieve foreign relation objectives.

“This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a friendly country. Kuwait plays a large role in U.S. efforts to advance stability in the Middle East, providing basing, access, and transit for U.S. forces in the region,” State Department officials said in a press statement.

The State Department said the proposed deal will have no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness and the proposed sale of equipment and support does not alter the “basic military balance in the region.”

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