February 8, 2018 / 9:51 AM / 10 months ago

S.Korea says next maritime patrol aircraft to be bought from overseas

SEOUL, Feb 8 (Reuters) - South Korea’s defense procurement agency said on Thursday that its next maritime patrol aircraft will be acquired from overseas, not domestically developed.

Boeing’s P-8A Poseidons and SAAB’s Swordfish are expected to compete for the deal, expected to be about 1.9 trillion won ($1.75 billion) for at least six maritime patrol aircraft, wire service Yonhap reported on Wednesday, citing an unnamed military source.

Nothing else has been decided on the acquisition beside that it will also need to be more technically advanced compared to South Korea’s existing Lockheed P-3 Orions, an official at the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) said.

DAPA declined comment on the procurement’s expected size or potential models.

Details of the procurement, including whether it might be a competition or a direct contract, are expected to be decided during the first half of 2018, the official said. ($1 = 1,088.4500 won) (Reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Richard Borsuk)

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