Australia wants as much as $1.5 billion for F/A-18E/F follow-on support as well as associated equipment and services, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said last week.

Australia has requested a possible sale of follow-on support of the F/A-18 aircraft to include up to four AIM-9X Sidewinder Captive Air Training Missiles, 10 AN/ALE-47 Electronic Warfare Countermeasure Systems, eight AN/ALQ-214 Radio Frequency Countermeasure Systems, and 10 AN/ALR-67(V)3 Electronic Warfare Countermeasure Receiving Sets, DSCA said.

Also included would be: avionics software, engine component improvement and spare parts, technical ground support equipment, spare and repair parts, supply support, publications and technical data, engineering change proposals, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. government and contractor technical and logistics personnel services, and other related elements of program support.

The principal contractors would be Raytheon [RTN], Boeing [BA] , ITT [ITT], and Symetrics Industries.

Australia needs this follow-on support, contractor maintenance, and technical services to maintain the operational capabilities of its aircraft.

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not affect the basic military balance in the region.

There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.