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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Qatar boosts its defense with new Patriot missile order


By Victoria Scott

The PAC-3 missile. Credit: Lockheed Martin

Qatar has placed a $29.5 million order with US firm Lockheed Martin for an unspecified number of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) missiles and PAC-3 MSE interceptors.

This is in addition to an existing deal that Qatar struck last year to obtain the weapons, which defend against incoming threats like ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft.

The new weapons are expected to be delivered by September 2021.

According to Lockheed Martin, six countries currently use PAC-3 missiles: the US, the Netherlands, Germany, Japan, the UAE and Taiwan. Kuwait has also placed an order for them.

Increased defense spending

Qatar’s latest defense purchase comes months after it signed a deal to install a defense system along its coast to help stop hostile ships from entering its waters.

The country’s Emiri Naval Forces (QENF) are paying European firm MBDA an as-yet undisclosed sum for the system, which will use Exocet and Marte ER missiles.

An Exocet MM40 B3. Credit: MBDA

Meanwhile, Qatar is also investing in new aircraft as it expands its air defense capability.

US lawmakers recently approved Qatar’s purchase of 36 F-15 fighter jets from Boeing.

And last year, Qatar agreed to purchase 24 Rafale planes from French manufacturer Dassault Aviation in a deal worth QR27.75 billion.


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