The United States is poised to sell $7 billion worth of Boeing Co. fighter jets to Qatar and Kuwait after years of delays, and it may start notifying U.S. lawmakers as early as next week, according to U.S.- and Persian Gulf-based sources familiar with the matter.
Boeing, which has the headquarters of its defense unit in the St. Louis area, said it was encouraged by continued progress and hoped to see movement on the two big arms sales soon. The State Department said it could not comment on any ongoing government-to-government arms sales.
The sales have been pending for more than two years, amid concerns raised by Israel, Washington’s closest Middle East ally, that equipment sent to Gulf Arab states would be used against it.
Delays in the process have caused frustration among U.S. defense officials and industry executives, who have warned that Washington’s foot-dragging could cost them billions of dollars of business if buyers grow impatient and seek other suppliers.
Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch