U.S. Approves American Weapons Sale For Kuwait’s Eurofighters

Eurofighter Typhoon
Credit: UK Royal Air Force

The U.S. State Department has cleared a potential sale of munitions to equip Kuwait’s new fleet of Eurofighter Typhoon combat aircraft. 

The proposed $397 million Foreign Military Sale, detailed by the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) on July 21, includes 60 Raytheon AIM-120C-7/8 Amraam air-to-air missiles and Mk. 84 and Mk. 83 2,000-lb. and 1,000-lb. dumb bombs. They likely will be equipped with Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) and Enhanced Paveway II kits. The proposed sale includes fusing systems, support, training equipment and inert munitions for training.  

The DSCA announcement emerged days after Aerospace DAILY reported Kuwaiti officials still were mulling which weapons to select  for the Eurofighter fleet. Kuwait has 28 Eurofighters on order and plans to equip two front-line squadrons with the type. 

They are to be based at the new Salem Al Sabah Air Base, an extension of Kuwait’s existing Ali Al-Salem Air Base. The Gulf state ordered its Typhoons in April 2016 and is the first customer to receive them fitted with an active electronically scanned array radar. Four of the 28 aircraft have been delivered. 

Handovers are due to be completed in 2024. The Typhoons are to be joined by a fleet of Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornets beginning in 2023. 

The arrival of the new combat aircraft will enable Kuwait to begin replacing legacy-model McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornets the country purchased after the Iraqi invasion of the country in 1991.  

The sale will “improve the infrastructure of a major non-NATO ally that has been an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East,” DSCA says.

“The proposed sale will improve Kuwait’s ability to meet current and future regional threats,” DSCA adds. “Kuwait has shown a commitment to modernizing its military and will have no difficulty absorbing these weapons into its armed forces.”

Tony Osborne

Based in London, Tony covers European defense programs. Prior to joining Aviation Week in November 2012, Tony was at Shephard Media Group where he was deputy editor for Rotorhub and Defence Helicopter magazines.