US clears $2.3 Billion Apache upgrade deal for Egypt

The US State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale of a refurbishment package for Egypt’s 43 Boeing AH-64E Apache attack helicopters.

The possible foreign military sale valued at an estimated $2.3 billion was approved on 7 May and the US Congress was notified the same day.

Egypt has requested a several equipment as part of the refurbishment package , including 88 T700-GE-701D engines; 47 AN/ASQ-170 Modernized Target Acquisition and Designation Sight/AN/AAR-11 Modernized Pilot Night Vision Sensors (MTADS/PNVS); 45 AAR-57 Common Missile Warning Systems (CMWS) and 92 Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation Systems.

Many of the components, including most of the T700 turboshaft engines, would be remanufactured. The business also includes weapons: Hellfire missile launchers, 2.75in tube rocket launchers, and M230 chain guns.

Also included are AN/AVR-2B Laser Detecting Sets, AN/APX-119 IFF transponders, AN/APN-209 radar altimeters, AN/ARN-149 Automatic Direction Finders, radios, APR-39 Radar Warning Sets, Enhanced Image Intensifiers, Hellfire launchers, 2.75 inch 19 tube rocket launchers, M230 automatic guns, M230 spare gun barrels, spares and other equipment.

“Egypt intends to use these refurbished AH-64 helicopters to modernise its armed forces to address the shared US-Egyptian interest in countering terrorist activities emanating from the Sinai Peninsula, which threaten Egyptian and Israeli security and undermine regional stability,” says the Defense Security Cooperation Agency. “This sale will contribute to Egypt’s military goal to update its capability while further enhancing greater interoperability between Egypt, the US, and other allies.”

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency says there are no known offsets for Egyptian companies as part of the potential deal, and the principal contractors would be Boeing and Lockheed Martin.

Over the last couple of decades, Egypt has been receiving significant foreign military financing from the United States, that must be spent on U.S. built defense equipment, the financial aid is valued at around $1.3 billion since fiscal year 2014.

Egypt’s security forces have been waging a war over the past four years against an Islamist terrorist insurgency, mostly in North Sinai, that has seen hundreds of security personnel killed, as well as hundreds of terrorists killed in security campaigns.

The announcement of the package comes the day after a new report by the Center for International Policy called for a re-look into whether military aid to Egypt is in the best interests of America.

Egypt is a major user of the Apache attack helicopter, with 46 AH-64Ds in service. The North African country also possesses 46 Kamov Ka-52s received from Russia, and a small number of Mi-24 attack helicopters, previously unknown. There are also about 60 Gazelle helicopters armed with HOT anti-tank missiles.

In November 2018 Egypt requested the sale of ten AH-64E Apaches for an estimated $1 billion,

Darek Liam

Darek Liam is the North African editor for AMB, where he writes about the intersection of Technology and national security. He has been covering defense and national security issues for more than a decade, previously as African Union correspondent.