Hanwha Aerospace said Friday it has clinched a deal with the Australian government to supply 3.2 trillion won ($2.4 billion) worth of armored tanks.
Hanwha Defense Australia, the company’s subsidiary in Australia, is poised to deliver 129 units of Hanwha’s Redback infantry fighting vehicles by 2028. The tanks will be manufactured in a new plant in Australia set to complete construction next year.
Hanwha said it will be supplying military equipment designed for export for the first time to a developed country that has a military alliance with the US. It took five years to develop and test the equipment before commercial production, according to the company.
Following the Australian military’s request, HDA applied a 360-degree security camera; a weapons system that can detect and intercept anti-tank missiles; harder and lighter rubber tracks; and a protection system that survives against anti-tank mines to the Redback tanks.
The company said South Korea’s state-run Defense Acquisition Program Administration and the Republic of Korea Army implemented new policies on military equipment exports and carried out a test run of the tanks, respectively, to add credibility to Hanwha’s weapons systems.
“We landed the supply deal thanks to the (Korean) government and military’s policy and diplomatic support. Combining South Korea’s well-developed ecosystem for military equipment with the company’s top-class production capacity and technology, we will boost the defense industry to become the nation’s next-generation driver of growth,” said Hanwha Aerospace CEO Son Jae-il.
Hanwha Group Vice Chairman Kim Dong-kwan also said, “As South Korea’s key defense company, we have taken a step forward in the unsettling geopolitics. The company plans to further expand its footing in maritime security, as well as the security alliance with the nation’s allies.”