U.S. approves $425 million in further arms sales to Taiwan

Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Biden
Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Biden at a meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit last month in Bali, Indonesia.
(Alex Brandon / Associated Press)

The Biden administration Tuesday signed off on two new significant arms sales to Taiwan, approvals that are sure to rankle China.

The State Department said it had green-lit sales worth more than $425 million of spare aircraft parts to support Taiwan’s fleet of F-16 fighters, C-130 transport planes and other U.S.-supplied weapons systems.

The package includes $330 million in standard replacement parts and $98 million in non-standard equipment, along with related accessories and logistics.


The sales were announced just weeks after President Biden met Chinese President Xi Jinping for talks in Indonesia, in which China’s increasingly aggressive behavior toward Taiwan was a major issue.

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China regards Taiwan as part of its territory and has vowed to reunify the island with the mainland by force if necessary. It has roundly condemned previous U.S. arms sales to Taiwan as violations of Washington’s “one-China policy” and is expected to react similarly to Tuesday’s announcement.

But successive U.S. administrations of both parties have said ties with Taiwan are governed by the Taiwan Relations Act, which allows the sale of military equipment to the island for its defense against potential threats from China.

“The proposed sale will help improve the security of the recipient and assist in maintaining political stability, military balance, and economic progress in the region,” the State Department said of the latest approvals, adding that they would also “contribute to the sustainment of the recipient’s aerial fleet, enhancing its ability to meet current and future threats while providing defensive and transport capabilities critical to regional security.”