Jet upgrade costs balloon to US$4.31bn

MEETING EXPECTATIONS:It is not uncommon for the cost of US arms deals to increase, a source said, adding that this deal was first discussed in September 2011

Taipei Times
Date: Sep 17, 2017
By: Lo Tien-pin and William Hetherington / Staff reporter, with staff writer

Upgrades to the nation’s fleet of F-16 jets will cost the nation about NT$129.6 billion

An F-16 jet is parked at Chingchuankang Air Base in Taichung on May 14. Photo: Lo Tien-pin, Taipei Times

(US$4.31 billion), more than NT$19.6 billion higher than the original estimate, a military source said yesterday.

The sudden increase in the cost of the upgrades includes US military demands that Taiwan shoulder more of the research costs associated with improving the jets’ capabilities and the cost of the anti-radiation missiles (ARM) that the US has agreed to fit to the aircraft, the source said.

Price rises during weapons procurement from the US are not uncommon, the source said, citing US requests for NT$10.1 billion over the original NT$30.8 billion cost of the purchase of a long-range radar warning system in 2012.

The two sides entered several rounds of negotiation before a final agreement was met on that deal, the source added.   [FULL  STORY]

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