The State Department approved a possible $3.2 billion Foreign Military Sales (FMS) request to the United Kingdom (UK) for P-8A Poseidon Aircraft and associated equipment, training, and support.

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notified Congress of the potential sale on March 24.

Navy P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft. Photo. U.S. Navy
Navy P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft. Photo. U.S. Navy

The United Kingdom requested notification for the possible procurement of up to nine P-8A Patrol Aircraft, associated major defense equipment, associated training, and support.

The prime contractor is Boeing [BA] other contractors include ViaSat [VSAT], GC Micro, Rockwell Collins [COL], Spirit [SPR], Raytheon [RTN], Telephonics, Pole Zero, Northrop Grumman [NOC], Exelis [XLS], Terma, Symmetrics, Arnprior Aerospace, General Electric [GE], and Martin Baker.

The sale would allow the United Kingdom to reestablish its Maritime Surveillance Aircraft (MSA) capability it divested when it canceled the Nimrod MRA4 Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) program. The United Kingdom has retained the core skills in maritime patrol and reconnaissance after the Nimrod retirement through Personnel Exchange Programs (PEPs), DSCA said.

The MSA has remained the United Kingdom’s highest priority unfunded requirement. The P-8A aircraft would fulfill this requirement,” DSCA said in a statement.

DSCA highlighted the sale would enhance the U.K.’s capabilities to provide national defense and contribute to NATO and coalition operations.

Implementation of the FMS would require about 64 personnel hired by Boeing to support the program in the United Kingdom.