The Department of Defense has selected18 new start projectsto receive fiscal 2005 funding under the Foreign Comparative Testing (FCT) program.
Authorized by Congress since 1980, the FCT Program is administered by the deputy under secretary of defense, advanced systems and concepts, office of the under secretary of defense, acquisition, technology and logistics.
The FCT Program demonstrates the value of using non-developmental items to reduce development costs and accelerate the acquisition process. The principal objective of the program is to support the U.S. war fighter by leveraging non-developmental items of allied and other friendly nations to satisfy U.S. defense requirements more quickly and economically. This is to increase U.S. capabilities in the war on terrorism and improve interoperability with our allies.
Given a first-rate foreign non-developmental item, U.S. user interest, a valid operational requirement, and good procurement potential, the FCT program fields world-class systems and equipment not otherwise available. At the same time, by promoting competition and eliminating unnecessary research, development, test and evaluation expenses, the FCT program reduces total ownership costs of military systems while enhancing standardization and interoperability with coalition allies, promoting international cooperation, and frequently serving as a catalyst for domestic industry partnering and U.S. industry overseas.
Each year, the military services and U.S. Special Operations Command nominate candidate projects for FCT funding consideration. Each proposed project is screened to ensure the fully mature technology addresses valid requirements, to confirm a thorough market survey was conducted to identify all potential contenders, and to verify the U.S. military sponsor has developed a viable acquisition strategy to procure the foreign item if it tests successfully and offers best value.
Of the 18 new start projects, four are sponsored by the Army, four by the Navy, five by the Marine Corps, and five by the U.S. Special Operations Command. Additional information is available on the FCT homepage: http://www.acq.osd.mil/cto/.
To view the new projects click here: http://www.defenselink.mil/news/Feb2005/d20050208program.pdf