Based on the agreement, signed with the Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), Indonesia's Defense Ministry will invest an estimated 1.6 trillion won ($1.3 billion) in the Korea Fighter Experimental (KF-X/IF-X) program. (Photo courtesy of Korea Aerospace Industries)

Indonesia, South Korea Sign $1.3b Fighter Jet Development Deal

BY :JAKARTA GLOBE

JANUARY 08, 2016

Jakarta. Indonesia and South Korea have signed a $1.3 billion deal on the development of Seoul's next-generation fighter jets aimed at replacing an aging fleet.

Based on the agreement, signed with the Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), Indonesia's Defense Ministry will invest an estimated 1.6 trillion won ($1.3 billion) in the Korea Fighter Experimental (KF-X/IF-X) program.

This aims to produce new homegrown fighter jets to replace South Korea's fleet of F-4 and F-5 jets imported from the United States, KAI said in a statement.

Last March, Seoul's air force welcomed 120 fighter jets after KAI sealed an 8.6 trillion won deal with US aerospace giant Lockheed Martin.

Jakarta's investment will make up about one-fifth of the project's total cost, with some 100 Indonesian workers to take part in the development and production of the jets in South Korea, according to KAI.

One prototype plane will be assembled in Indonesia, with Jakarta to get access to technical data and information on the project, while two others will be produced in South Korea.

Both countries plan to put the new fighter jets into operation by 2025, with Indonesia in need of two squadrons.

The Indonesian Air Force already has a fleet of 16 KAI-made T-50 fighter trainers. One of the jets crashed during an air show in Yogyakarta last month, killing both Indonesian pilots on board.

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