US State Department approved the sale of Basler BT-67 transport aircraft to Argentina

The US State Department has approved the possible sale of Basler BT-67 transport aircraft to Argentina.

The estimated $143 million sale includes spares engines, training, and logistics support. However, the number of aircraft to be sold was not disclosed.

The aircraft will enhance the Argentinian military’s airdrop and airlift capacities to service Antarctica during winter. It will also help reduce the burden on other airlift assets in the country.

Wisconsin-based Basler Turbo Conversions will be the principal contractor for the proposed sale.

The Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-67R turboprop-powered aircraft has a takeoff weight of 30,000 pounds (13,600 kilograms) and a cruise speed of 215 miles (346 kilometers) per hour.

It can accommodate two pilots, one flight attendant, and 18 passengers and has a range of 1,800 miles (2,897 kilometers).

The approval comes as the US government announced a subsidy of $40 million in Foreign Military Financing (FMF) to Buenos Aires in support of its defense modernization.

“The FMF is a security assistance grant reserved for major partners,” a US Embassy in Argentina statement read.

“[It] allows Argentina to purchase defense items, training and services from the United States, through free assistance funds, and improve interoperability with US forces.

“This subsidy will favor Argentina’s military modernization effort, contributing to Argentina’s purchase of F-16 supersonic fighter jets.”

The Danish government this week announced selling 24 used F-16 fighter jets to Argentina.

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