Korea to Sign Export Deal for KT-1 Aircraft to Peru

Korea and Peru will sign a US$200 million deal next month for the export of the KT-1 trainer aircraft. Korea will export a total of 20 planes. It is the third export deal for the KT-1 after Indonesia and Turkey, and the first defense export to a South American country.

Government officials on Wednesday said the deal comprises 10 KT-1 trainers and 10 KA-1s, an upgrade to a light attack plane. Originally, the deal was expected to be reached around Thursday, when Peruvian President Ollanta Humala visits the country, but the final signing has been put off as some details like technology transfer are left to be discussed.

A defense industry insider said, "This will help us to secure a bridgehead to expand into South America, where Brazilian aircraft manufacturers like Embraer dominate the market."

The KT-1 is a single-engine turboprop plane jointly developed by Korea Aerospace Industries and Agency for Defense Development in 1998. It is used by fighter pilots for training. The Korean Air Force operates 85 of them.

englishnews@chosun.com / May 10, 2012 13:12 KST