Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Romania buys South Korean artillery systems

On July 9th, Hanwha Aerospace and the Romanian Ministry of National Defense signed a contract, valued at approximately $1 billion, for the supply of 54 K9 Self-Propelled Howitzers (SPH) and 36 K10 Ammunition Resupply Vehicles (ARV).

“This is a remarkable deal that can further strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries,” said Mr. Jaeil Son, President and CEO of Hanwha Aerospace. “This contract involves not only artillery vehicles but also supporting vehicles and ammunition, representing Hanwha Aerospace’s capability to provide a total package of advanced defence solutions based on its high-level of technological expertise and world-leading production capacity.”

Under the terms of the contract, Hanwha will deliver the vehicles in stages over the next five years, with the first delivery expected by early 2027.

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Most of the vehicles will be manufactured in Romania, involving extensive participation from local suppliers. This move is expected to boost the Romanian defense industry significantly.

“Hanwha Aerospace is committed to maximizing benefits to the Romanian defense industry through various types of localization programs, which include local production of defense equipment, local employment, technology transfer, and the establishment of Center of Excellence for MRO operations in a new greenfield facility in Romania,” said Mr. Peter Bae, Vice President of Hanwha Aerospace Europe. “Romanian industry’s inclusion in Hanwha Aerospace’s broad global supply chains is one of the potential benefits Romania could take from the collaboration. Through this partnership alongside with other future projects, Romania would become a hub of Hanwha Aerospace’s land business in Europe.”

Romania becomes the 10th nation to operate the 155mm/52-calibre K9 SPH, joining NATO members Türkiye, Poland, Norway, Finland, and Estonia. Romania will also be the third global operator of the K10, following Norway and Australia.

This acquisition will significantly enhance Romania’s artillery capabilities, providing a fully automated resupplying capability to maximize the efficiency of its artillery forces.

The K9 SPH, developed in cooperation with the South Korean Agency for Defense Development, is optimized for ‘Shoot and Scoot’ capabilities, enabling it to fire multiple rounds and quickly relocate to avoid counter-fire. The system is being upgraded to feature a fully automatic ammunition handling system, capable of firing over 10 rounds per minute with a reduced crew of three members.

The K10 ARV supports the K9 by carrying and resupplying 104 shells of 155mm artillery ammunition and 504 units of charges under contested conditions. Its fully automated ammunition resupply system guarantees efficiency in logistics support and tactical movements in severe battlefield conditions.

Hanwha Aerospace is also offering the Redback Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) for Romania’s IFV modernization program. The Redback was selected for Australia’s next-generation IFV under the LAND 400 Phase 3 program, highlighting its advanced capabilities and robust performance in rigorous tests.

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Executive Editor

About author:

Gu Min Chul
Gu Min Chul
Gu Min Chul is a defense reporter who covers the Korean defense industry and all related issues.

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