The State Department of the United States has approved to sell Estonia the M142 high mobility artillery rocket system – known as HIMARS – and related equipment for an estimated cost of up to USD500 million.
The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying the country’s congress of this possible sale on 15 July.
According to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the Estonian government had requested to purchase up to six M142 HIMARS launchers and equipment related to them. The total estimated cost is USD500 million.
“This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the security of a NATO ally that continues to be an important force for political stability and economic progress in Europe. This sale is consistent with US initiatives to provide key allies in the region with modern systems that will enhance interoperability with US forces and increase security,” the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a statement.
Updating Estonia’s military capability
“The proposed sale will contribute to Estonia’s military goals of updating capability while further enhancing interoperability with the United States and other allies. Estonia intends to use these defense articles and services to modernize its armed forces and expand its capability to strengthen its homeland defense and deter regional threats. Estonia will have no difficulty absorbing this equipment into its armed forces,” the agency added.
The M142 HIMARS is a light multiple rocket launcher developed in the late 1990s for the United States Army. It carries one pod with either six rockets, two missiles, or one missile. The launcher can be transported by Lockheed C-130 Hercules aircraft. Both chassis and launcher system are produced by Lockheed Martin Missiles & Fire Control in Camden, Arkansas.The Defense Security Cooperation Agency, as part of the United States Department of Defense, provides financial and technical assistance, transfer of defense matériel, training and services to allies, and promotes military-to-military contacts.