Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) has resumed talks with the Philippines for the sale of Surion KUH-1 multi-role helicopters.
Talks with Manila and other potential export possibilities had come to a halt following a fatal crash in July this year of a Marineon (Marines’ version of the Surion) operated by South Korea's Marine Corps. An investigation report had blamed a defective rotor master provided by a subcontractor.
KAI has restarted "technology talks" with the Philippines last week on the possibility of supplying Surions, KAI CEO Kim Jo-won said in a November 25 report by Yonhap News. Besides Manila, KAI is also pursuing a possible Surion sale with Indonesia.
In addition, KAI plans to roll out the prototype of a light armed helicopter in December this year, Yonhap said quoting a company official.
The LAH is designed to fly at a speed of upward of 324 kilometers per hour and have a range of some 905 km. Its maximum take-off load is 4.9 tons with the chopper to be equipped with a 20-mm gun and anti-armor guided missiles made locally. The first operational LAH is set to be delivered to South Korean Army toward the end of 2022, the Yonhap report said.