Korea in Huge Arms Export Deal to Turkey

    June 22, 2007 10:48

    Korea will export its next-generation tank XK-2 Heukpyo, a.k.a. Black Panther and training plane KT-1 Ungbi to Turkey. The contract is worth more than W500 billion (US$1=W938), the second largest arms export deal in Korea’s history. Turkey is buying 30 of the planes.

    The Defense Acquisition Program Administration on Thursday said the Turkish government announced that it launched negotiations with Korea Aerospace Industries to purchase the training planes. DAPA added that the technology to manufacture the Heukpyo tank will be exported to Turkey and the vehicle will be produced there. The tanks cost W8.3 billion each.

    They have a 120-mm gun and can protect themselves from chemical, biological and radioactive attacks. They run at a maximum speed of 70 km/h with a 150-horsepower engine and can function under 4.1 m of water. The Agency for Defense Development and Rotem, an affiliate of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, invested W200 billion over the past 12 years in development of the tank. It will be put into service in 2011.

    Developed by the Agency for Defense Development in 1988, the first KT-1 went into service in November 2000 and the Korean Air Force uses 85 of them. A DAPA official said 12 KT-1s have been exported to Indonesia. The training plane has a top speed of 574 km/h with a 950-horsepower engine.

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