U.S. in talks with Taiwan to coproduce American weapons: sources

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is considering a plan to jointly produce weapons with Taiwan, according to three people familiar with the plan. It aims to increase production capacity for U.S.-designed arms, speed their transfer and strengthen deterrence toward China.카지노사이트

“There has been a change in the approach from Beijing toward Taiwan in recent years,” said U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken at an Oct. 17 event in California. “A fundamental decision [has been made] that the status quo was no longer acceptable, and that Beijing was determined to pursue reunification [with Taiwan] on a much faster timeline.” Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to receive an unprecedented third term as leader at the Communist Party’s 20th National Congress, which will continue until Oct. 22, and he may further ratchet up military pressure on Taiwan.

A person with direct knowledge of the matter acknowledged that initial discussions on joint U.S.-Taiwan production had begun. It is likely for U.S. defense companies to provide technology to manufacture weapons in Taiwan, or to produce them in the U.S. using Taiwan-made parts. “This is going to take some time to really shake out,” said another source, adding that the process is likely to continue throughout 2023.

“The Hsiung Feng II and III missiles are Taiwanese missiles developed by the NCSIST (National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology) and are produced with some U.S. technology,” said a representative of the U.S.-Taiwan Business Council, a group that includes major U.S. defense contractors. “Taiwan has not coproduced U.S. weapons whether munitions or platforms.” Previous U.S. administrations are thought to have been cautious about joint production of U.S.-made weapons because of the risk of classified information leaking.

U.S. State Department principal deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said during a daily news briefing Wednesday, “What I would say broadly is that the U.S. is looking at all options on the table to ensure that the rapid transfer of defense capabilities to Taiwan can take place as swiftly as possible,” without commenting on the specific plan to jointly produce weapons with Taiwan. “And consistent with the Taiwan Relations Act, as you know, we have made available various services and defense articles for Taiwan’s security, and the swift provision of these technologies and these services we believe are essential to Taiwan’s security.”

A spokesperson at Taiwan Ministry of National Defense told Nikkei, “We will make a request to the U.S. to expedite arms deliveries to Taiwan.”

The Biden administration is considering coproduction to expedite arms transfers. Generally, it takes between several to 10 years from the time the U.S. government approves an arms sale until the delivery is completed. The U.S. military believes China may be capable of seizing Taiwan by 2027, meaning there is limited time left for Taiwan to improve its self-defense capabilities.

The rapid increase in arms provisions to Ukraine has made it difficult for the U.S. alone to meet the global demand for weaponry. In a mid-September report, Mark Cancian, senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, noted that U.S. inventories of Stingers, a mobile air-defense system, and HIMARS, high-mobility artillery rocket systems, were “limited.”

Stingers and HIMARS are manufactured by U.S. defense giants Raytheon Technologies and Lockheed Martin, respectively.바카라사이트

In May, Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense revealed that it had planned to receive the Stinger sequentially by March 2026, but the pace of delivery may slow. The government is poised to switch its procurement of self-propelled howitzers to other systems due to delays in delivery. The delivery of HIMARS is expected to be completed in 2027, and Harpoon anti-ship missile systems in 2028.

According to congressional documents obtained by Nikkei in the spring of 2022, the U.S. government has not completed the delivery of at least 10 arms sales approved since July 2019, and the government estimates the sales to be worth over $13 billion.

David Sacks, a research fellow at the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations, stresses that coproduction might be helpful not only to expedite transfer of weapons to Taiwan but also to encourage the island to increase defense spending.

“There is resistance in Taiwan to significantly raising defense spending because there is a sense that this money is leaving the [Taiwanese] economy,” Sacks said. “Ensuring that at least a portion of this money stays in Taiwan and goes to local suppliers can hopefully negate some of this and make it politically easier to raise defense spending.”

The Biden administration is also laying the groundwork to encourage allies and partners to provide security assistance to Taiwan. Nikkei Asia has learned that the Biden administration has begun sounding out partners regarding the provision of weapons and parts to Taiwan.

The Group of Seven agreed on the importance of maintaining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and some expressed willingness to provide arms to the island. In an interview with CNN in September, British Prime Minister Liz Truss stressed, “All of our allies need to make sure Taiwan is able to defend itself.” France has previously done business with Taiwan regarding frigates and fighter aircrafts.

According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies in the U.K., all of Taiwan’s arms imports came from the U.S. from 2016 to 2020. China will likely have a strong opposition to arms support by European and Asian countries that do not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

The U.S. and other 50 countries have held a regular conference for Ukraine to coordinate their security assistance. The last meeting was held on Oct. 12, and participants agreed to accelerate the transfer of air-defense systems, in light of large-scale missile attacks from Russia.온라인카지노

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