KAI pitches fighter jets to RTAF during defence chief Sutin”s visit

KAI pitches fighter jets to RTAF during defence chief Sutin"s visit

RTAF intends to devote$ 19 billion on new aircraft.

KAI pitches fighter jets to RTAF during defence chief Sutin's visit
Local deals: Defence Minister Sutin Klungsang, straight, meets South Korean equivalent Shin Won- sik during a visit to South Korea, which ended monday.

According to a source in the Defence Ministry, Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI ) has made a proposal to sell FA50 light fighters to the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF ), which plans to spend 19 billion baht on the purchase of new fighter jets in the upcoming fiscal year.

The plan was floated by Kang Goo- fresh, CEO of KAI, during Defence Minister Sutin Klungsang’s attend to South Korea which ended monday.

The South Korean Defense Ministry invited Mr. Sutin to observe the final two of the Korean-made T-50 advanced coach jets that will be delivered to the RTAF in August, along with defense permanent secretary Gen Sanitchanok Sangkhachan.

His group traveled to KAI’s Sacheon service by helicopter that the host had set up.

8 T-50 advanced trainer jets and six FA50 light soldiers were purchased by the RTAF in 2015, and the aircraft have been steadily delivered and put in service at Wing 4 in Nakhon Sawan, based in Thailand, since 2018.

Mr. Kang Goo- young claimed in a press interview that the company’s FA50 is a multi-role fighter that can do the same thing with the atmosphere combat capabilities of the US-made F16 fighter jets but at about half the cost and less maintenance.

The KF- 21, also developed by KAI, costs only US$ 80 million ( 2.9 billion baht ) with maintenance cost of$ 14, 000 per flight hour, he said.

Mr. Kang Goo-young,” We’re ready to make a plan to the RTAF to take into account our fighter jets which are less expensive and deserving of their cost.”

The RTAF plans to decommission 102 Squadron’s ancient F16s at Wing 1 and remove them with 12 new fighter jets.

According to the atmosphere force’s White Paper, the first four plane will need 19 billion baht to be purchased in the future 2025 fiscal year.

The plane procurement plan was scheduled to be presented to the cupboard on April 2, according to the Air Force Commander, ACM Punpakdee Pattanakul, next week.

The heat pressure is said to be weighing between Sweden’s Gripen E/F and the US’s F- 16 Block 70 plane. In May or June, a collection panel that was established to select the two options is expected to make a decision.

The air force’s offset plan and other requirements for federal potential growth were addressed by Sweden’s Saab AB last week, according to Saab AB.

Countries that provide fresh defense equipment to Thailand must comply with the offset policy by providing equitable economic evaluations in diplomatic trade.

According to the cause, under the saving plan of 19 billion ringgit, the RTAF may procure eight FA50 jet. With six FA50 jet previously ordered, it will have a full of 14, constituting a regiment.

An F16 fighter jet costs US$ 160 million with maintenance expenses of$ 20, 000 per flight hour, compared with maintenance cost of$ 5, 000 per flight hour for a FA50.

Mr. Sutin and his North Korean rival Shin Wonsik spoke about protection and strengthening military cooperation in the fields of education and the defense sector during the visit.

The Defence Technology Institute (DTI ) and the Defense Industry and Energy Center were scheduled to continue discussions regarding the development of the defense industry.

According to the source, the South Korean Defense Ministry indicated an interest in developing additional cooperation with plans to transfer specialized know-how to Thailand.

They also had a conversation with UNC main Paul J. LaCamera, who thanked Thailand for its assistance in UN operations and thanked Thai service members for their commitment.