KF-X program is subject to 60% budget cut, but boasts confidence in technology development for the four core technologies

With the recent resignation of the Senior Secretary for Foreign Affairs and National Security, Ju Chul-ki, over the failure to properly report the rejection from the US government of the technology transfer for the four core technologies of the KF-X program, MOSF set the budget for the KF-X program at KRW 67 billion, which is a 60% cut from the originally requested KRW 161.8 billion, stated to be because of the delayed progress of the program. Despite the concerns of many, DAPA mentioned that this budget cut was not a problem as the reduced funds can be pursued in 2017.

In addition, numerous figures have expressed confidence on the domestic development of the four technologies whose transfer has been rejected. Kim Kwan-jin, Chief of The National Security Office, told National Assembly members that the development of the technology has been pursued since 2006 and will be developed in 10 years. In addition, the negotiations with Indonesia were announced to be 90% complete, despite concerns on whether the nation was still on board. DAPA is also preparing reports to the Cheong Wa Dae (Blue House) on the future plans of the KF-X program.

The KF-X program was also a focus of ADEX 2015, where KAI CEO Ha Sung-yong stated that the technologies can be developed by 2015, and that KAI projects over 1,000 KF-X to be sold domestically and overseas, generating revenues of KRW 175 trillion. At ADEX 2015, executives from Lockheed Martin also expressed that the 21 technology transfers currently on request will be authorized by the US government. However, several seminars on the KF-X program were reportedly set at mediocre contents avoiding sensitive issues such as timelines, raising the possibility of deliberate tone downs by DAPA and ADD.

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