National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said on Thursday, June 7 that the Philippines may acquire additional FA-50PH jets from Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI).
Lorenzana said the possible acquisition of additional FA-50PHs will be tackled in the upcoming senior leaders’ meeting of military and defense officials.
“Pagusapan pa namin dito sa ano – dito sa senior leaders, pero ‘yun ang gusto ng ano, natin, pati si Presidente [Rodrigo Duterte], nung makita niyang effective, baka dagdagan pa,” Lorenzana said as quoted by GMA News Online.
“Baka daw dagdagan pa ng another 12 pero it depends on kung ano ‘yung ating iniisip na build-up ng ating [Philippine Air Force],” he added.
It can be recalled that Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief-of-Staff General Carlito Galvez praised the contribution of PAF FA-50PH jets during the Marawi battle against terrorists.
“The roar of the FA-50(PH) is the roar to victory. The PAF is the ‘game changer’ during the Marawi campaign. I’m impressed with the air warriors for flying day and night just to provide all the needed support of our troops on the ground during the entire campaign. Without our very skilled, focused and hard working pilots, air crew and air controllers, our casualties could have been more,” Galvez said during the Marawi Air Campaign Commemoration at the Edwin Andrews Airbase, Zamboanga City last month.
Lorenzana added that South Korea is ready to provide military weapons and equipment to Philippines. He also said that South Korea is willing to transfer technology so that Philippines could also produce military equipment.
“Wala naman silang pinledge, pero they are prepared. Marami kasing pinagusapan dun, not only ‘yung helicopter, kundi pati firearms. Gusto nilang mag-transfer ng technology so that we can also produce our military equipment,” Secretary Lorenzana said.
Sources: http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/news/nation/656049/phl-may-get-additional-fighter-jets-from-sokor-lorenzana-says/story/; http://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1036455