Taiwan might shift its preference to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JFK) after the US declined to sell F-16’s to the island, to safeguard its relationship with China, defense specialist Wendell Minnick writes in Defense News, quoting deputy Defense minister Andrew Yang.
Taiwan has requested 66 F-16C/D fighter aircraft and a mid-life upgrade (MLU) package for 146 older F-16A/B fighters. However, due to pressure from China, the U.S. had declined Taiwan’s request for new C/Ds. The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency is expected to release the Congressional notification this week for the A/B MLU.
The specter of declining U.S. support for Taiwan’s defense needs has rattled the Ministry of National Defense, which has become reliant on U.S. arms exports as others, such as Europe and Israel, have sided with China to curry economic and political advantages.
Wendell Minnick is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch.
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