Italy intends to acquire two MQ-9 unmanned aerial vehicles and associated equipment from the US for $63m.

The request order includes one mobile ground control station, maintenance support, engineering support, test equipment, ground support, operational flight test support, communications equipment, technical assistance, personnel training / equipment, spare and repair parts.

The unmanned systems will allow Italy to defend its deployed troops, strengthen regional security and interoperability with the US.

The systems will also aid the nation in participating in future Nato, coalition and anti-terrorism operations that the US may undertake.

The contractors for the proposed sale are General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Raytheon and General Atomics Lynx Systems.