Thailand plans purchase of eight more South Korea trainer jets

By Elizabeth Shim Contact the Author   |  July 10, 2017 at 9:44 PM
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July 10 (UPI) -- Thailand is pursuing plans to acquire eight additional South Korea-made T-50 trainer jets.

The Bangkok Post reported Tuesday, local time, the Thai government is working on plans to purchase the jet trainers, worth a total of $231.5 million.

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon will seek cabinet approval for the purchase of the supersonic advanced trainers, according to the report.

The Royal Thai Air Force will finance the purchase over the next three years from its dedicated budget, and the deal may be finalized on July 29 with Korea Aerospace Industries.

The T-50 will replaced the older Czech Republic-made L-39 advanced trainers.

Thailand's air force has plans to build a squadron of 16 jets, South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.

In 2015, Thailand purchased four T-50 advanced trainers for $110 million, with delivery scheduled for early 2018.

The report comes a few months after South Korea demonstrated a T-50 trainer in Southeast Asia.

The T-50B trainer was promoted at the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition in an air show.

The T-50 aircraft has also been exported to Indonesia and the Philippines.

KAI and Lockheed Martin jointly developed the T-50. It can be equipped with a 20-millimeter cannon, as well as rockets and missiles.

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