US approves MQ-9 Reaper follow-on support sale to France

General Atomics and the US government will provide £300 million worth of support for France’s MQ-9 Reapers. (Photo: US Air Force) France has contracted General Atomics, with US governmental support, to supply MQ-9 Reaper follow-on support. The US State Department has approved a possible FMS to the Government of France for MQ-9 Reaper follow-on contractor logistics support and related equipment with an estimated value of £300 million.

The follow-on equipment stipulated includes aircraft components, spares and accessories, training equipment and simulator software. The contractor logistics support includes software and software support services, repair and return, US government and contractor provided engineering, technical and logistical support services and other related elements. The principal contractor will be General Atomics and there are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with the sale.

According to Shephard Defence Insight, France initially requested the purchase of 16 Reapers in 2013, the number was later reduced to 12 MQ-9s.

The final six aircraft are Block 5 configuration, the first of which was delivered to France in January 2020 but remained inactive until March, its first operational mission was conducted in May 2021.