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K-2 tanks and K-9 self-propelled guns, our domestic weapons.
Recently, it has become a hot topic as a “K-Defense myth” as it has signed a large-scale export contract with Poland.
However, in order to fill the first export volume to be sent to Poland, it is understood that the amount that the Korean Army was originally supposed to receive, as well as the self-propelled artillery currently in service in the army, has been withdrawn and replenished.
Although manufacturing facilities are limited and export deadlines are tight, a power gap in our military has become inevitable for the time being.
Reporter Hong Eui-pyo was the only reporter.
◀ Report ▶
The K-2 tank and the K-9 self-propelled howitzer are recognized as domestic “luxury weapons”.
Poland, where strengthening the strength of the army was a top priority in the war in Ukraine, also chose them.
We signed an introductory contract worth $ 5.7 billion and $ 7.7 trillion in our own money.
[엄동환/방위사업청장 (지난 8월 27일)]
“While (Poland) uses the K-9 and K-2 tanks, we have taken care of every detail so as not to cause any inconvenience …”
K-2 tanks until 2025 and K-9 self-propelled guns until 2026 in Poland.
However, this export has been confirmed to include South Korean military supplies.
180 K-2 tanks and 212 K-9 self-propelled guns exported to Poland.
Of these, 32 K-2s and 12 K-9s were originally to be delivered to the Korean Army, but we decided to send them to Poland first.
Notably, in the case of the K-9 self-propelled howitzers, 36 guns currently in use by the army were also included in the export target with the Polish consent.
This plan is said to have been decided in July after discussions between the Ministry of National Defense and the joint chiefs of staff, the army and the administration of the defense acquisition program.
This appears to be due to the fact that the production was unable to meet the demand from the Polish side in time.
Our military supplies will be replenished later, but the introduction has been delayed by about a year each.
In particular, concerns are raised that self-propelled artillery currently in operation is included in the export target, which could lead to a power gap.
[송옥주 의원/국회 국방위원회]
“There are areas where there are fears that there will be a gap in national security. They are talking about remedying, but they need to be investigated thoroughly.”
The Ministry of National Defense said: “We have the principle of promoting defense exports while maintaining an attitude of complete military readiness.”
However, as a power gap exists over a period of time, it is emphasized that alternatives such as replacing some of the old K-1 tanks with new engines should also be considered to fill the gap in the exported K-2.
This is MBC News Hong Eui-pyo.
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