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Ellen Lord: Pace of US Int’l Weapon, Drone Sales Hits Defense Industry

Ellen Lord
Ellen Lord

Textron Systems CEO Ellen Lord says the government’s process for sales of weapons and unmanned systems to international customers is affecting business for U.S. defense companies amid declining Pentagon sales, Defense One reported Thursday.

Marcus Weisgerber writes that Lord believes the foreign military sales program’s pace and process present an advantage to companies in Europe, Russia and China to meet customers’ urgent weapons and security needs.

“I’m afraid that perhaps sometimes we are far more risk averse and people are much more afraid of making a mistake than they are invested in getting the deals done so that the ultimate customer gets what needs to be delivered,” Lord told Defense One.

Weisgerber reports that the government oversees the sale of defense equipment to foreign military customers but does not allow the sale of some weapons due to the risk of potential adversaries gaining afcess U.S. technology.

The U.S. is a member of the Missile Technology Control Regime, which seeks to control the spread of unmanned systems that can carry weapons of mass destruction by limiting sales, the report said.

Lord noted that Textron Systems has discussed the matter with U.S. government officials.

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