July 13, 2017

Thailand Interested in Buying Armored Cars, Rifles

Thailand has shown interest in buying Korea's armored cars and rifles, defense officials here said Wednesday.

Bangkok has already purchased a 3,650-ton frigate made by Daewoo Shipbuilding, which will be delivered to the Royal Thai Navy next year. The country also signed a deal in September 2015 with Korea Aerospace Industries to buy four T-50TH supersonic trainer jets to replace their Czech Republic-made L39 trainer jets.

Defense officials and scientists from Thailand are visiting Korea as part of their efforts to explore defense industries and organizations.

During their four-day visit that began Monday, Thai officials from the Defense Science and Technology Department (DSTD), led by Deputy Director Maj. Gen. Sombat Prasankasem, and scientists from the Defense Technology Institute (DTI) toured Korea's defense companies, including Poongsan and S&T Motiv.

Poongsan produces ammunition, while S&T Motiv manufactures rifles and machineguns, such as the K-2 and K-12.

The DSTD, part of Thailand's defense ministry, is in charge of defense technology and quality control. The DTI is the ministry-affiliated center that leads research and development and testing and evaluation.

Thai officials and scientists also visited the Defense Agency for Technology and Quality (DTaQ) on Tuesday to learn about Korea's procedures to standardize and guarantee the quality of military supplies and materials.

"The visit took place at the request of Thailand which is seeking to enhance technology cooperation with Korea," the DTaQ said. "The DTaQ explained to Thai officials using examples of standardization and quality assurance of military supplies. The DTaQ also showed them its test facilities."

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