State Dept. Approves Possible Sale of MH-60R Helicopters to South Korea

Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class Nathaniel Smith directs an MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopter, assigned to the “Grandmasters” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 46, aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Bainbridge (DDG 96) Aug. 6, 2019. The State Department has approved sales of the MH-60R to South Korea. U.S. NAVY / Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jason Waite

WASHINGTON — The State Department has made a determination approving a possible foreign military sale to South Korea of MH-60R multimission helicopters with support for an estimated cost of $800 million, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said in an Aug. 7 release. The same day, DSCA delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale.

South Korea has requested to buy 12 MH-60R Seahawks, along with mission systems, sensors, crew-served guns and 1,000 AN/SSQ-36/53/62 sonobuoys. The purchase also would include “spare engine containers; facilities study; design and construction; spare and repair parts; support and test equipment communications equipment; ferry support; publications and technical documentation; personnel training and training equipment; U.S. government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The total estimated program cost is $800 million,” the release said.

“The proposed sale will improve the Republic of Korea Navy’s capability to perform anti-surface and antisubmarine warfare missions, along with the ability to perform secondary missions including vertical replenishment, search and rescue, and communications relay,” the release said. “The Republic of Korea will use the enhanced capability as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defense. The Republic of Korea will have no difficulty absorbing these helicopters and support into its armed forces.”

The prime contractor will be Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems, Owego, New York.