The Israeli Ministry of Defense announced on Thursday the U.S. government’s approval of Germany’s $3.5 billion procurement of the Arrow 3 missile defense system from Israel. Senior officials of the Israeli and German defense ministries will next sign a letter of commitment with a $600 million allocation to jumpstart work on the project.
The Israel Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency jointly developed the system. Israel Aerospace Industries leads Arrow 3’s industrial team, which includes Elbit Systems, Tomer, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Stark Aerospace.
Arrow 3 features nuclear and other nonconventional warheads designed to intercept ballistic missiles outside the Earth’s atmosphere. The system provides long-range interception capabilities and launches hit-to-kill missions against incoming threats.
According to Israel Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Arrow 3 is a force multiplier in the country’s air defense, a capability that will soon be Europe’s as well. Describing the German deal as the largest in Israel’s history, Galant added that Israel Aerospace Industries’ engineers have set new records in Arrow 3.
Germany earlier said its air force expects to receive Arrow-3 by the 2025 fourth quarter. The system’s purchase comes along with other efforts to upgrade the country’s military amid the Ukraine war, according to a report in The New York Times. After the war started, Germany established a $109 billion fund for modernizing its armed forces and announced in 2022 that it would buy Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter planes to update the Luftwaffe, the report noted.