The US State Department has given the green light for Australia to purchase up to 220 long-range Tomahawk cruise missiles, making it the second US ally to acquire the weapon after the United Kingdom. The deal, valued at approximately 1.3 billion Australian dollars ($895 million), includes maintenance and logistical support, according to a statement from the Defense Security Cooperation Agency.

This move is set to bolster Australia’s ability to collaborate with US maritime forces and other allied forces on missions of mutual interest. The announcement comes as the US, Australia, and the United Kingdom further solidify their AUKUS pact, a three-way agreement to share technology and resources for building a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines.

Under the AUKUS deal, the US will sell a minimum of three Virginia-class submarines to Australia, while Australia and the UK will develop their own fleets of nuclear-powered subs to strengthen their presence in the Indo-Pacific, where China continues to expand its military assets.

Tomahawk missiles, first used in the Gulf War in 1991, are capable of flying at low altitudes and high subsonic speeds, guided by mission-tailored systems. The Royal Australian Navy’s Hobart-class destroyers and the Virginia-class submarines that Australia plans to purchase from the US as part of the AUKUS deal could potentially be equipped with these missiles.

Despite the AUKUS deal’s support from Australia’s major political parties, it faced criticism this week from former Labor Prime Minister Paul Keating, who called it “the worst international decision by an Australian Labor government” in over a century. The AUKUS deal is projected to cost up to $245 billion (368 billion Australian dollars) over three decades.