Dec 12, 2013
Korea exports 24 FA-50 light attack aircraft to Iraq
Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) signed a contract to sell 24 FA-50 light attack aircraft to Iraq.
South Korea defense contractor is set to deliver the jets between October 2015 and October 2016.
Kai has sold 16 T-50 supersonic trainers to Indonesia, 40 KT-1 basic trainers to Turkey and 20 KT-1s to Peru.
In the competition, the KAI product beat BAE Systems’ Hawk-128, Russian Yakovlev’s Yak-130 and Czech aircraft producer Aero Vodochody’s L-159.
With Iraq being scheduled to import 36 F-16s from next year, the Korean light attack plane was seen as the best option to bridge the air power vacuum, while nurturing pilots.
The FA-50 was developed in Korea as a possible replacement for the Air Force’s F-5E/F when the aging fighters are retired.
KAI is set to try to continue the winning vibe in its sales pitch for other countries including the Philippines, Botswana and eventually, the United States.
In the U.S. Air Force’s trainer competition, aimed at replacing its fleet of T-38s.
The FA-50, which was first unveiled in January 2006, is a light combat version of the T-50 supersonic trainer that was co-developed with Lockheed Martin.