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Indonesia ‘committed' to KF-21 project despite payment plan delay

The fifth prototype of the KAI KF-21 will be delivered to Indonesia after 2026 if Jakarta fulfils its required financial commitment to the programme. (DAPA)

Indonesia is “committed” to the joint development of the KF-21/IFX fighter development programme despite missing a deadline to provide South Korea with a payment timetable for the project, according to an industry source.

On 3 July the South Korean Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced that Indonesia was yet to provide the new plan for payment. The agency added that it seeks to hold talks with Indonesia about the matter. The Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) KF-21 engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) phase has a value of KRW8.1 trillion (USD6.2 billion), according to Janes data. Indonesia has agreed to pay 20% of developmental costs or approximately KRW1.6 trillion (USD1.2 billion).

A state-owned aircraft manufacturer PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI) source told Janes that “Indonesia [is] still commit[ted] to continue the joint development of the ... programme”.

According to the source, Jakarta has paid 21% of its cost share up to June 2023. “There is no definite timetable until now for [the release of the] 2024–26 payment plan … by the Republic of Indonesia Ministry of Defense. However, by 2024 Indonesia has a plan to pay off about 32% from the 2023 cost-share payment,” the source added.

Lieutenant Colonel You Hyoung-keun, a spokesperson for DAPA told South Korean media during a regular briefing on 3 July that the agency is planning a response after deliberations with Indonesia. This could be a “senior-level” meeting, Lt Col You said.

DAPA told Janes that “[South] Korea will continue [the] discussion with the [Indonesian] government to resolve the cost-share issue and to put the ROK-RI [Republic of Korea-Republic of Indonesia] joint development back on track”.

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