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Boeing (NYSE:BA) shares hit fresh all-time highs Thursday, a day after the U.S. and Qatar signed a deal that will send $12 billion worth of F-15 fighter jets to the Gulf nation.
In November, the Obama administration approved the sale of up to 72 F-15QA multirole fighters to Qatar for $21.1 billion.The deal was said to remain on the table last week after a diplomatic battle broke out between Qatar and Middle Eastern neighbors such as Saudi Arabia, which has accused Qatar of supporting terrorist groups. U.S. officials have said the jets will bolster Qatar’s defense capabilities and increase military cooperation between the two nations.
U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis met with Qatari Minister of State for Defense Affairs Khalid al-Attiyah in Washington, D.C., to sign the Boeing jet deal on Wednesday. The sale includes 36 F-15s, according to Reuters, equal to half of the initial agreement.
Boeing, maker of the F-15, is listed as the primary contractor.
“We thank the Qatari and U.S. governments for moving forward with the F-15 agreement. We are very grateful for their continued confidence in Boeing,” Boeing said in a statement.
Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT), Elbit Systems (NASDAQ:ESLT) and BAE Systems (OTC:BAESY) are among the supporting contractors.
Boeing’s stock touched a record high of $195.21 in recent trading, up 1.5% on the day. Lockheed Martin also showed modest gains, while the broader market posted red ink.
President Trump commented on the agreement during a White House event Thursday to announce an executive order supporting apprenticeship programs.
“We just signed a big deal yesterday for hundreds of millions of dollars worth of military equipment [that’s] going to be made in this country…for other countries,” Trump said.
Qatar is home to a key U.S. military base. The U.S. carries out operations against ISIS and other terrorist groups from Al Udeid Air Base, where more than 11,000 American and coalition troops are deployed.
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