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American lawmakers have expressed concern that much-awaited deliveries of F-16 fighter jets to Taiwan might face additional delays because of present geopolitical considerations.

Two dozen Republican representatives wrote a letter to US Air Pressure Secretary Frank Kendall, stating the nation’s obvious difficulties in finishing the manufacturing and switch of the Combating Falcons.

Whereas they acknowledged US President Joe Biden’s efforts to hurry up deliveries, they stated considerations have compounded now that Washington additionally has army commitments to Ukraine and Israel.

US Consultant Rob Wittman, the vice chairman of the Home Armed Providers Committee, burdened the significance of prioritizing guarantees to Taipei as safety considerations improve within the island nation.

“We can not afford to over-promise and under-deliver to our closest buddies,” he stated.

The lawmakers predict a report from Kendall by December 18 to clarify the standing of the Taiwanese F-16 program.

Troubled Program

In 2019, the US State Division authorised the sale of 66 F-16 fighter jets and associated assist gear to Taiwan for $8 billion.

Preliminary deliveries have been initially scheduled earlier this 12 months, however manufacturing points have halted the switch till the third quarter of 2024.

Regardless of technical and provide chain challenges, the self-ruled island expects all plane underneath order will arrive as scheduled in 2026.

Nonetheless, US lawmakers admitted to seeing a “excessive threat” of additional delays to the troubled program.

They’ve estimated the deliveries can be accomplished by 2027.

“Given the protection division’s historic delays in executing these overseas army gross sales, the complexity of the F-16’s software program integration, and logistical supply challenges, we nonetheless assess the execution of those instances to be high-risk,” Wittman informed Bloomberg.