South Korea looks to Britain for aircraft carrier development, says GlobalData

Following the news that Babcock and Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) have signed an MoU to develop South Korea’s first aircraft carrier:

William Davies, Associate Defense Analyst at GlobalData, offers his view:

“Partnering with Babcock will facilitate the integration of advanced technology onto HHI’s aircraft carrier. Babcock was a lead partner within the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, which designed and built the Royal Navy’s two Queen Elizabeth-Class (QEC) carriers currently in service. There are two significant design similarities between the HHI potential design and the QEC – the notable ski jump and signature twin-island design.

South Korea is likely to increase its spending in the coming years to counter a number of threats, and its acquisitions budget will be increasing significantly – allowing it to make large purchases including its forthcoming aircraft carrier.

“GlobalData’s latest report, ‘South Korean Defense Market Attractiveness, Competitive Landscape and Forecasts to 2026’ reveals that South Korean defense expenditure is forecast to increase to $60bn by 2026 from the current $43.7bn.

“The development of an aircraft carrier and increase in overall military spending will enable the ROK to project greater regional power. While South Korea’s greatest threat has historically been North Korea, China’s growing assertiveness in the South China Sea and increasing hostility between the US and China means that greater military capability will be needed.”

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