March 16, 2015 Dave Majumdar - nationalinterest.org
America has an opportunity to export its expertise.
Last month, the U.S. State Department unveiled new export guidelines for commercial and military unmanned aircraft—colloquially known as drones. While ostensibly holding firm to the U.S. government’s adherence to the voluntary Missile Control Technology Regime, the new policy would allow the export of drones with ranges greater than 300 kilometers and a payload of more than 500 kilograms on “rare occasions.”
The new policy formalizes the de facto arrangement that already existed, which allows the U.S. government to currently export machines like the General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper and the Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk. But perhaps more significantly, it sets up a standard for the export of commercial drones—imposing restrictions on the sale of those machines.
With the door more or less open to a wide range of sales to foreign operators—here are five countries that might benefit from U.S. drone technology.