U.S. assures quality of military equipment after report of fake parts


Taipei, June 24 (CNA) The United States has assured Taiwan of the quality of weapons it sells to other countries, weeks after a U.S. Senate report found that the use of bogus Chinese electronic parts in American military equipment was widespread, Taiwan’s military said Sunday.

In a recent reply to Taiwan’s inquiry on the issue, the U.S. said it has also taken measures to prevent counterfeit parts from making their way to its defense supply chain, the Ministry of National Defense said in a statement.

These include tightening quality control measures and requiring weapons manufacturers to have identification marks on their products, the statement said.

“(These will) ensure that the quality and functions of U.S.-made weaponry sold to other countries are the same as those of the weapons used by the U.S. army,” the statement said.

The U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee published a report on May 21 on counterfeit electronic parts in America’s defense supply chain, which concluded that many counterfeit electronic parts from China had found their way into U.S.-made military equipment.

A week after the report was issued, Deputy Defense Minister Chao Shih-chang said at a legislative hearing that the ministry had asked the U.S. about the report and how it would address the problem.

The findings of large numbers of fake parts in U.S.-made equipment worried Taiwan because the U.S. is the island’s main arms supplier.

In the report, the U.S. Senate found the use of bogus parts was widespread, identifying 1,800 cases where counterfeit electronic parts had been installed in American military equipment during 2009 and 2010.

The U.S. committee tracked 100 of the 1,800 cases and traced more than 70 percent of the suspect parts to China.