Boeing P8 and Saab Swordfish maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) are the likely candidates as South Korea today decided to procure six new aircraft to supplement its MPA fleet of 16 P-3C and P-3CK Orion planes in service.
South Korean Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) aims to respond to a change in security conditions, including North Korea's submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) threats, Yonhap reported quoting DAPA’s statement Wednesday.
DAPA however did not disclose the number of planes it would buy and the timeframe for the procurement.
The military also plans to purchase additional PAC-3 Patriot guided missiles from the United States in a Foreign Military Sale manner. "(We) are scheduled to sign a contract in the latter half of this year," said the DAPA.
Once the guided interceptors are deployed, it will significantly improve the ballistic missile defense capabilities for residents in Seoul and nearby Gyeonggi Province and major military facilities in the region, added the DAPA.