South Korea to manufacture mid-level fighter jet
Iran Press TV
Fri Jul 18, 2014 3:34PM GMT
South Korea military chiefs have endorsed a plan to design and make a mid-level fighter jet for delivery starting in 2025.
The proposed twin-engine fighter jet, dubbed the KF-X program, has been endorsed by South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff on Friday.
The development of the jet is estimated to cost upwards of 8.5 trillion won (USD 8.24 billion), said think tank Korea Institute for Defense Analyses (KIDA).
The project will be carried out by the country's sole jet builder, Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd (KAI).
The jet program had been initially co-developed with US defense contractor Lockheed Martin Corp, unidentified sources claim.
South Korea is also scheduled to take delivery of 40 F-35 fighters from the American defense company in the near future.
KAI makes the T-50 family of jets, a home-built light trainer and fighter, which was also co-developed by Lockheed Martin.
The T-50IQ aircraft, a variant of its T-50 supersonic aircraft, is an advanced multi-role fighter that possesses precision-guided weapons, missiles and machine guns.
Last year, the Iraqi government inked a USD 1.1 billion deal to purchase 24 multi-role T-50IQ fighters from South Korea.
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