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South Korea, Indonesia pledge closer industrial ties

South Korea and Indonesia have pledged to expand defence industrial co-operation as part of closer strategic ties.

The Ministry of National Defense (MND) said in a press release on 8 April that the commitment was outlined by South Korea’s Defence Minister Suh Wook and his visiting Indonesian counterpart Prabowo Subianto.

The MND said the two countries’ strong industrial ties were “symbolised” by their collaborative work on the development of the Korean Fighter eXperimental (KF-X) fighter aircraft, which was unveiled by prime contractor Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) on 9 April.

This USD8 billion development programme is led by South Korea but with 20% of costs funded by Indonesia in return to access to related technologies and knowhow.

“Given that the KF-X joint development project symbolises the solid mutual trust between Korea and Indonesia, we will continue to work together to promote mutually beneficial defence co-operation in the future,” said the MND.

The MND also said that South Korea and Indonesia would hold meetings between senior foreign and defence ministry officials this year and launch a new defence dialogue mechanism to boost communication. The two countries also pledged to expand military training and education exchanges.

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