News / Asia

    South Korea Looks to Increase Arms Exports

    South Korea Looks to Increase Arms Exportsi
    X
    November 15, 2013 3:54 PM
    South Korea aspires to become a top player in the global arms industry. But some observers are concerned where those weapons are headed. From Seoul, reporter Jason Strother has more.
    Jason Strother
    South Korea aspires to become a top player in the global arms industry. But some observers are concerned where those weapons are headed.
     
    The Seoul Aerospace and Defense Expo attracts arms manufacturers from across the globe.  It is also a venue for South Korean firms to showcase the latest in technology for weapons on land and in the air.   
     
    Baek Yoon-hyung is a South Korean air force pilot and spokesperson for the Defense Acquisitions Program Administration, DAPA, a government agency that oversees military imports and exports.  He said South Korea targets developing economies to sell its weapons. “Basically Korea doesn’t have advanced technologies, but we have general and rigid technologies.  We could share the market in certain place.   We aim to expand to the niche market,” he said. 
     
    According to DAPA, South Korea’s military exports have grown 10 fold in the past decade, totaling just over $2.3 billion in 2012. And compared to other arms exporting nations, South Korea comes in 15th in terms of sales.  DAPA says it wants to break into the top ten.
     
    Ambitious newcomers in the global arms trade, like South Korea, are a concern observers at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, SIPRI. Senior Researcher Siemon Wezeman spoke to VOA over Skype.
     
    “Sometimes they look for markets in slightly dodgy places, places where not everything is ok. Places where human rights are an issue, where internal tensions or tensions with neighbors are an issue,” explained Wezeman.
     
    Wezeman said South Korea’s plans to sell military equipment to the Philippines might raise tensions with China. The two countires are locked in a territorial dispute in the East China Sea.
     
    But analyst Kim Byung-ki of Korea University said the Philippines has a genuine need for security that South Korea can provide for.  “The Filipinos have a right to have a defensive weapon to both deal with internal human trafficking, terrorists, narcotics and criminal organizations connected to the outside world, and of course to have a minimal and robust defensive capability against a great power,“ Kim stated.
     
    DAPA’s Baek Yoon-hyung said the South Korean government recognizes these regional concerns. “When we consider opening the market, opening sales to other countries, we consider neighboring countries relationships and possible disputes.  We don’t want to cause any trouble between the countries,” said Baek.
     
    Baek said that by following those standards, South Korea hopes to land more and more weapons deals.

    Producer Malte Kollenberg also contributed to this report.

    You May Like

    US Leaders Who Served in Vietnam War Look Back and Ahead

    In New York Times opinion piece, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senator John McCain and former Senator Bob Kerrey say as US strengthens relations with Vietnam, it is important to remember lessons learned from war

    Who Are US Allies in Fight Against Islamic State?

    There is little but opportunism keeping coalition together analysts warn — SDFs Arab militias are not united even among themselves, frequently squabble and don’t share Kurds' vision for post-Assad Syria

    Learning Foreign Language Helps US Soldiers Bridge Culture Gap

    Effective interaction with local populations part of everyday curriculum at Monterey, California, Defense Language Institute

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora