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《TAIPEI TIMES》US to deliver TOW-2B missiles this year

A Humvee armed with US-made TOW-2A missiles fires at a target during exercises in Pingtung County on July 3 last year.
Photo: Lo Pei-de, Taipei Times

A Humvee armed with US-made TOW-2A missiles fires at a target during exercises in Pingtung County on July 3 last year. Photo: Lo Pei-de, Taipei Times

2024/06/18 03:00

MORE FIREPOWER: The TOW-2B missiles can be used to attack tanks and bunkers, and destroy landing ships, which would greatly bolster the nation’s defense capabilities

By Shelley Shan / Staff reporter

All 1,700 TOW-2B missiles that the government has procured from the US would be delivered by the end of this year, Minister of National Defense Wellington Koo (顧立雄) said yesterday.

Koo was briefing lawmakers at a meeting of the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee about progress that had been made regarding arms procurements from the US to enhance the nation’s sea and air combat capabilities.

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇) asked Koo when Washington would begin delivery of an arms package of 1,700 TOW-2B missiles and 100 launch systems that was scheduled to begin in 2022 and for which the government budgeted about NT$11.8 billion (US$364.37 million).

So far, none of the weapons systems listed in the package has arrived, Wang said.

Koo said that the TOW-2B missile package is one of three main weapons deliveries from the US that have been delayed.

“The delivery of the missiles was delayed, because they did not pass an evaluation by the US Army. The missiles passed the evaluation after being remade. All TOW-2B missiles the government has purchased are to be delivered in the fourth quarter,” Koo said.

Wang asked if “all of the TOW-2B missiles” could actually be delivered, to which Koo replied: “Yes.”

Regarding the delayed delivery of 66 F-16V jets, Koo said that two prototype jets are to be delivered in the fourth quarter for testing.

The government has asked that the fighter jets be delivered by the end of 2026, he said.

The redesigned TOW-2B missiles can be used to attack tanks and bunkers, and destroy landing ships, which would greatly bolster Taiwan’s defense capabilities, defense officials said.

Meanwhile, Koo said that the ministry would establish an advanced defense technology task force that would be in charge of combining key technologies from Taiwan and abroad to accelerate the pace of building combat capabilities for asymmetric warfare.

Koo earlier this month said that the task forse, which is similar to the US Defense Innovation Unit, would be part of the ministry’s Department of Integrated Assessment.

He said that he would oversee the operations of the task force, which would ensure that resources and research and development by the Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology and private defense contractors are integrated more efficiently.

However, Koo also said the task force could not operate like the US’ Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which has sufficient funding to finance studies in any new discipline.

新聞來源:TAIPEI TIMES

Minister of National Defense Wellington Koo speaks at a meeting of the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times

Minister of National Defense Wellington Koo speaks at a meeting of the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee in Taipei yesterday. Photo: Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times

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