The US Department of State has approved a “possible Foreign Military Sale” of five P-8A maritime patrol aircraft to Germany.

The estimated cost of any potential sale would be $1.77 billion.

The notice for the potnetial sale is displayed below.

“The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Germany of P-8A Aircraft and Associated Support, and related equipment, for an estimated cost of $1.77 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.”

The notice also goes into the specifics:

“The Government of Germany has requested to buy five (5) P-8A Patrol Aircraft; nine (9) Multifunctional Distribution System Joint Tactical Radio Systems 5 (MIDS JTRS 5); and twelve (12) LN-251 with Embedded Global Positioning Systems (GPS)/Inertial Navigations Systems (EGls). Also included are commercial engines; Tactical Open Mission Software (TOMS); Electro-Optical (EO) and Infrared MX-20HD; AN/ AAQ-2(V) I Acoustic System; AN/APY-10 radar; ALQ-240 Electronic Support Measures; NexGen Missile Warning Sensors; AN/PRC-117G Manpack radios include MPE-S type II with SAASM 3.7; Global Positioning Systems (GPS) 524D Precise Positioning System (PPS) for APY-10 Radar; AN/ALQ-213 Electronic Counter Measures; AN/ALE-47 Counter Measures Dispensing Systems; AN/UPX IFF Interrogators; APX-123A(C) IFF Digital Transponders; KIV-78 IFF Mode 5 Cryptographic Appliques; CCM-701A Cryptographic Core Modules; KY-100M, KY-58, KYV-5 for HF-121C radios; AN/PYQ-10 V3 Simple Key Loaders (SKL) with KOV-21 Cryptographic Appliques; aircraft spares; spare engine; support equipment; operational support systems; training; training devices; maintenance trainer/classrooms; publications; software; engineering technical assistance (ETA); logistics technical assistance (LTA); Country Liaison Officer (CLO) support; Contractor Engineering Technical Services (CETS); repair and return (RoR); transportation; aircraft ferry; and other associated training and support; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The total estimated program cost is $1.77 billion.”

Finally, the notice states:

“This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the security of a NATO Ally which is an important force for political and economic stability in Europe.

The proposed sale will improve Germany’s capability to meet current and future threats by providing critical capabilities to coalition maritime operations. Germany currently operates the Lockheed P-3C Orion, but that aircraft is reaching end-of-life and will retire in 2024. Germany plans to replace it with the P-8A Poseidon. The proposed sale will allow Germany to modernize and sustain its Maritime Surveillance Aircraft (MSA) capability for the next 30 years. Germany will have no difficulty transitioning its MSA force to P-8 and absorbing these aircraft into its armed forces.”

The U.S. State Department add that notice of a potential sale is required by law and doe snot indicate a concluded deal.

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Supportive Bloke

Great news for commonality across NATO.

Bad news for subs up to mischief with the UK, Norwegian and now German – not forgetting whatever the French use as the US P8’s that are UK based.

With a program getting as big as it is long terms support is going to be cheaper.


Hopefully, the Boeing facility at RAF Lossiemouth might become a support centre for all the European Poseidons.


Tell you what with the move of Van de Liar to the top spot of the EU and the instalment of Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer as the new German defence minister she has within the space of a few years shown she understands the situation regards the German military and set about addressing those issues last September she gave the go-ahead for the German army to purchase the Haenel MK 556 to replace their Heckler & Koch G36, Last November she placed the order for the army to receive 1500 spike missiles, and for the navy to receive RBS15. The other week… Read more »


Russian intervention in Ukraine woke up a lot of dormant European militaries. The notion that their military was reliant on old equipment that barely functioned from the 1980s and we had some sort of technological edge to counter them quickly disappeared. Without the US the EU would not be able to defend the Balkin’s


Merkel is still sleeping with regards to defense. Just because they have committed now to buying a few P-8s doesn’t mean they will actual field them. Just look at the sad state of the German sub force. All tied up at the docks.

John Clark

Absolutely farouk, the Germans have made a a very sensible decision.
Certainly a big opportunity for sharing training and support costs between three NATO counties now and that’s good for all of us.

Frances dream fro a Euro Airbus P8 ‘lookalike’ has just dropped off the edge of a cliff!

Its looking increasingly like the Franco German Spanish Fighter project is heading the same way too, the disagreements are turning into entrenched positions…

can France really afford to go it alone again?


Still can’t believe Britain did not speak to France, Spain and Germany to split R&D costs for a joint MP aircraft. Would have saved the government billions in wasted R&D.
This Franco Germany aircraft will be interesting it’s bound to end in tears. I just can’t see the UK affording it’s own program with just Sweden and Italy as partners.

Supportive Bloke

The thing is the politics. Germany will order loads in the treaty and cut massively increased the work share is awarded. France will try and wrestle control whist hoovering as much UK tech as possible. UK will provide money and try and keep the thing running. The story has been repeated so so many times with so so many projects that it simply isn’t funny. Fundamentally we do have all the tech, state of the art radars, jet engine and reaction engines to build a plane in the UK as well as the design/manufacturing skills. The trick is as ever… Read more »

John Clark

The problem was that at the time we were looking at a Nimrod replacement, back in the 90’s, the French had recently bought Atlantic 2 aircraft and the Germans weren’t going to initially bother replacing their 1st Gen Atlantic aircraft. Our various European procurement programmes were rather out of sync at the time, hence the disastrous Nimrod MR4A debacle! That said, it would probably have ended up being yet another European bun fight, lets face it, the A400 programme has been going even longer and its still not fully cleared for the full range of missions…! Go European and expect… Read more »


Airbus will deliver all A400s then stop all customer support to force a upgrade. you know it will happen

Martyn Parker

Would’ve been a colossal waste of money, it would’ve cost 3 times as much and had 90% of the capability, costs come down with weight of orders a European MPA would’ve had 1/5th the sales of the American fleet alone never mind the world wide sales


BAEs were developing one, dont forget AND IT DIDNT WORK, Labour threw £Ms @ it, and BAEs were used too making excuses for why it didn’t work. Nimrod should never have been selected as the airframe in 1st instance. but it whats was offered, Should of Used 146. but if you stop and think. P8s are just starting there Service lives, BAE146 are now @ there end. Working with EU PARTNERS, or buying a off the shelf system package makes logical sense. following on the E7s RAF has a single platform less costs involved. As far as servicing NATO aircraft,… Read more »


That’s nice but not true. The Haenel order got thrown out and is now HK has the order, the RBS15 is a long term agreement that predate AKK, the Heavy Helicopter program and the SAM program have been debacles under AKK as well as VderL…

This is the US State department clearing the sale, doesn’t mean there is a sale.

Last edited 10 days ago by Mark
John Clark

With regards to the 416, its an excellent rifle, fusing 60 years worth of AR platform refinement, with HK’s short stroke piston system. Its the right choice to make for Germany and they follow France in adopting it as the main service rifle. Don’t be surprised if the UK also adopt a variant of the HK416 as its next rifle too, perhaps with a slightly heavier profile barrel. It would make sense for NATO countries to adopt the same rifle for all sorts of good, common sense reasons. The 416 lends itself easily convertible to a new standard intermediate NATO… Read more »


I am not sure the original rifle needed changing, there was a big scandal about it all as I recall.
And the US are going to change from 5.56 to 6.8 calibre anyway. We will follow.

John Clark

Well, the original G36 has been in service for a while and the HK416 is the way to go. 6.8 is the accepted ‘way’ to go calibre wise, the precise characteristics of the new NATO round though are still being figured out and their dosent seem to be a crashing hurry to move over to it. The US calls the shots here, (excuse the pun) and with many hundreds of thousands of M4’s in the ordinance system and millions of 5.56mm in store, there’s no perceived hurry! The good thing about the 416 is being an AR, it can be… Read more »


Fair comments, but the G36 was not a bad rifle and any overheating problems were thrown in by journalists with no real evidence. But … and here the shades of the EU vaccine scandal (and it’s associated lies) cast a shadow… defence minister Ursula van Lyden (yes that one) promptly never looked for expert advice and delved into replacing it with no real examination. Which in turn brought in other scandals. Not least that no proposed gun could not meet the requirements because the tender was impossible to meet the criteria. (This deep scandal indeed seem not dissimilar to me… Read more »


The US Army is very serious about replacing the M4 starting in late 2022 with a new rifle which fires the 6.8 round. There are three prototypes currently being tested and, as important, the US Army has started construction on a new manufacturing facility dedicated exclusively to the 6.8 round at its Lake City ammunition factory.
This is one of the US Army’s priorities and will be here sooner rather than later.


JC wrote: “Don’t be surprised if the UK also adopt a variant of the HK416 as its next rifle too, perhaps with a slightly heavier profile barrel. It would make sense for NATO countries to adopt the same rifle for all sorts of good, common sense reasons. As TrevorH points out the US are looking at moving to the 6.8 round and so I feel that the Uk will change to that rather than 5.56 simply as the 6/8 has more stopping power. The irony here is, the Uk after WW2 spent a lot of time and money on finding… Read more »


A little more info on the US 6.8mm weapon project:

John Clark

I know mate, the EM2’s .280 round and the 6.8 are very close indeed in the general concept of an intermediate round, but with a heavier longer range bullet. The UK was years ahead of the game, but hey ho….

We are still keeping the L85 show on the road, through the A3 rebuild.

But we need to push towards a new rifle soon.


This is true, the EM2 was a far sighted rifle.

I think the long road to then replace the FN was not a happy one (the prototypes actually got worse as they developed), but in the end the SA80 has developed into a good rifle.

The original intent was for it to be 4.8mm I think (?), with a useful cartridge.

John Clark

It’s a fascinating discussion Trevor, I’ve had the privilege of examining one of the EM2 prototypes and while discussing the rifle with experts, one issue comes to light. It’s just too complicated and that in itself is an issue. The SA80, well, I would suggest everyone on here with an interest in firearms development read “The Last Enfield”, it’s a sobering read and an objective lesson in how not to equip an army. Examination of an L85A1, A2 and A3 together, side by side show the gradual transformation over 30 years into the rifle it should have been in the… Read more »


Thank you. May be the EM2 would have developed…
I believe the M16 had issues at the start. But please do know that I am just a passing observer! But tragically I can be an opinionated one!

John Clark

Hi Trevor, the EM2 is a very interesting rifle, doing very well in trials. It certainly could have come into service and very nearly did, as the No9 MK1. The M16 had issues when it first came into service, mainly down to lack of cleaning kits and lack of chroming the bores and chambers, plus ammunition and return spring issues. The modified M16A1 fixed many of these problems. The M16A2 from the mid 1980’s, with its heavier barrel and three round burst, plus numerous small mods was a very good and extremely reliable rifle, with 20 years of maturity behind… Read more »


NATO and common sense. something you never hear….

Ian Skinner

Yes, it is really noticeable how the Germans seem to be getting their act together since UVL left.


All this is just the US making the P8 available for Germany to buy, doesn’t mean they are, they are looking at different options, nothing has been picked yet and given the issues they’ve had with both their SAM system and helicopter replacement it’s way to early to declare a winner.

Rob N

I am amazed that the Germans have gone for US kit. I thought they would have insisted on something built by Airbus with the EU stamp of approval on it…


The Germans prefer not to deal with ITAR-controlled kit if they can.


Merkel is too cheap on defense to pay for the development of a new sub hunter.


The Germans maybe just doing it to keep the USA happy ,good Will for keeping Troops ,rather than sending them to Poland as Trump intended.


Threat of all the US Troops leaving Germany has scared them a little, not about there defence, about the loss of $ spent in there country…


No doubt Germany and a whole host of other continental nations will end up operating more P8’s than us – the island nation with vital maritime interests…..


the agreement is for 5, so expect 3 , and with old jabba jaws stepping down, it will be cancelled

JJ Smallpiece

Time for the UK to buy 500 Leopard 2 A7s


Let’s hope they’re not all grounded like all the German subs being stuck at the docks for lack of funding/manning.