South Korea pushes local industries with new KDDX announcement, says GlobalData

Korean Destroyer (KDDX).

Following today’s (29 May 2020) news that South Korea announced the basic design bidding for the next Korean Destroyer (KDDX);

Mathew George, Ph.D., Aerospace & Defense Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:

“According to GlobalData’s report, The Global Naval Vessels and Surface Combatants Market 2020-2030, Korean naval vessel market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 0.77% between 2020 and 2030, in line with the regional growth of 2.67% in Asia-Pacific with the destroyers program in the region accounting for 2.12% growth.

“The present announcement, pegged at KRW209.74bn (US$169.76m), is to develop the basic design by the second half of 2023 and move towards shipbuilding by 2024. This shows how South Korea is looking at its present austerity measures as a short-term cut to some programs but is pushing ahead with critical projects, the basics of which need to be in place when the world figures out the new normal.

“South Korea has long pushed its local companies to develop the technologies it needs to counter the threats it is facing. In line with that, the expectation with the project is for South Korea’s strong shipbuilding industry to work in conjunction with local defense companies to bid for this project and create an ‘Original Korean Destroyer.’

“While indigenization isn’t a new theme for South Korea, localization and creating robust supply chains are ideas that are gaining further traction around the world in light of COVID-19 impacts (and other geo-political events). It is important to remember though, that South Korea’s defense industry does not purely deal with domestic needs; over the past couple of years, South Korea has become a leading exporter of defense equipment from Asia.”