Kuwait's ministry of defense has signed a letter of offer and acceptance with the U.S. Department of Defense for the purchase of 16 AH-64D Apache Longbow combat helicopters. With the signing of this agreement, Kuwait becomes the seventh international defense force to select the AH-64D and the eleventh Apache customer worldwide.
Once the foreign military sales agreement is complete, the U.S. Army will contract with Boeing [NYSE: BA] and other team Apache industry members on behalf of Kuwait for the aircraft and equipment. The total program, which is expected to approach $900 million, includes the acquisition of the Longbow fire control radar, ordnance -- including Hellfire missiles -- spare parts, training services and maintenance support.
Production and delivery information for these aircraft -- to be used by the Kuwait Air Force -- has not been disclosed.
The AH-64D Apache Longbow is produced by Boeing in Mesa, Ariz. In addition to the multiyear contract with the U.S. Army to remanufacture 269 AH-64As into the Apache Longbow configuration through 2006, Boeing is under contract or in negotiation to produce Apaches for several international customers and a number of potential customers are evaluating the system.
The AH-64D Apache features fully integrated avionics and weapons plus a state-of-the-art modem that transmits real-time, secure, digitized battlefield information to air and ground forces. The Apache Longbow is the world's only fourth-generation attack helicopter and the only combat helicopter in service with the ability to rapidly detect, classify, prioritize and engage stationary or moving enemy targets at standoff ranges in nearly all weather environments.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $23 billion business. It provides systems solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in launch services.