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GAO: MDA Should Ramp Up Transparency With Ballistic Missile Defense Test Schedule, Costs

The Government Accountability Office has called on the Missile Defense Agency to address transparency issues with its cost estimates and test schedules related to the development of the Ballistic Missile Defense System.

GAO said in a report published Tuesday it made the recommendation due to lack of consistency and transparency with MDA’s cost estimates to back up its $1 billion budget request each year for BMDS tests.

MDA achieved some of its delivery and testing objectives for some BMDS components in fiscal year 2016, such as the completion of 10 test flights, implementation of five system level capabilities and updates to fielded interceptors, according to the report.

The congressional watchdog also found that MDA lacks sufficient insights from the Defense Department with regard to its acquisition strategies and design methods for several technological capabilities that MDA plans to integrate with BMDS.

GAO noted that MDA has spent approximately $123 billion on BMDS development since 2002 and plans to allocate another $37 billion to continue development work through FY 2021.

MDA conducted a live-fire test Tuesday to demonstrate its BMDS’ Ground-Based Midcourse Defense system component against an intercontinental ballistic missile target.

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