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Taiwan showcases CM-34 IFV capability

Taiwan's CM-34 Infantry Fighting Vehicle, fitted with an Orbital ATK 30 mm gun, is pictured at the Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition (TADTE) in 2019. (Janes/Kelvin Wong)

Taiwan's Armaments Bureau showcased its locally developed CM-34 wheeled infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) at a media event on 16 June.

The event was intended to demonstrate the capability of the vehicle against a background of growing tension between Taiwan and China.

In comments reported by state news, an Armaments Bureau official confirmed that the Republic of China Army (RoCA) has ordered 305 CM-34s, with 173 delivered since 2019.

The official also said that the bureau's 209th Arsenal facility in Jiji, in the centre of Taiwan, is building six CM-34s a month, indicating that deliveries of the type are on track to be completed by 2023.

The event marked the first time that the CM-34 had been demonstrated to media, although a prototype of the vehicle was unveiled at the Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition (TADTE) in 2019.

Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND) initially ordered 284 CM-34s, with an order for an additional 21 vehicles confirmed in August 2020. In April 2020 the MND also disclosed that the RoCA had used the CM-34 in training manoeuvres, stating that the primary target of the platform will be wheeled vehicles and fortified bunkers.

The 24-tonne CM-34 is the IFV variant of the locally developed CM-32 ‘Cloud Leopard' family of armoured vehicles.

Janes has previously reported that the CM-34 is armed with a stabilised Orbital ATK Mk 44 Bushmaster II 30 mm dual-feed cannon and a co-axial 7.62 mm machine gun. Six smoke-grenade launchers are fitted to either side of the turret, which offers protection against 12.7 mm heavy machine gun fire.

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