The State Department has approved the Government of Norway to purchase six MH-60R Multi-Mission Helicopters and related equipment for an estimated cost of $1bn.
The sale also includes training simulators, spare and repair parts, technical and logistics support services, integration and test activities required to produce the Norwegian MH-60R helicopters, and other related logistics and program support elements.
The proposed sale will support the foreign policy goals and national security objectives of the United States by improving the security of a NATO ally that is an essential force for political stability and economic progress in Europe.
Norway joins various European nations who have also procured the MH-6O Helicopter, showing its capabilities and popularity in due course. Nations such as Denmark, Greece, and Spain are examples of NATO members whom all possess the MH-60R helicopter in their military inventory.
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The acquisition of the MH-60R Multi-Mission Helicopters will help improve and replace its European NH90s and modernise its military rotorcraft fleet, enabling Norway to strengthen its Coast Guard capabilities and ability to perform secondary missions, including vertical replenishment and communications relay.
The enhanced capabilities will serve as a deterrent to regional threats and strengthen Norway’s homeland defence. The principal contractor for this project will be Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems, based in Owego, New York.
In addition to purchasing MH-60R Multi-Mission Helicopters, Norway has secured C-130J sustainment services. The State Department has approved the purchase of sustainment and services for four C-130J aircraft beyond Block 6 through 2028, along with related equipment, for an estimated cost of $166m.
Norway already has four C-130Js, which were acquired between 2008-2012 and can easily absorb these articles and services into its armed forces. The principal contractor for this project will be Lockheed Martin, based in Marietta, GA.
A solid transatlantic relationship between the US and Norway has translated into US dominance of Norway’s defence import market. From 2017–21, 83% of Norwegian defence imports came from the US, according to GlobalData’s report on “Norway’s Defense Market 2022-2027.”
The approvals for these projects demonstrate the close and strategic relationship between the United States and Norway and the continued commitment of both countries to work together for mutual security and prosperity.