South Korea’s HD HHI (HD Hyundai Heavy Industries) will develop an indigenous mid-size submarine for export. Currently, South Korea’s submarine market is divided between HD Hyundai Heavy Industries and Hanwha Ocean (formerly known as DSME).
During a press conference held on November 20th, Dr. Won-Ho Joo, Chief Operating Officer of HD HHI’s Naval & Special Ship Business Unit announced that HD HHI has started development of an indigenous mid-size submarine model for the export market. He commented, “There are only two companies that can enter the international bid for submarine procurements in South Korea.” He then added that a cooperation between HD HHI and Hanwha Ocean is vital in future submarine building, mentioning that this cooperation between HD HHI and Hanwha Ocean would boost the competitiveness in project bidding and actual shipbuilding process. He also added that “This will positively impact the entire industry.”
However, it is uncertain whether Hanwha Ocean would take up this offer from HD HHI. Hanwha Ocean has previously released in its official statement that “In the overseas submarine export market, ‘Team Korea’ is formed by approximately 200 domestic partner companies that supply equipment for the domestically produced KSS-III class submarine, which achieved an 80% localization rate. This team not only collaborates on submarine procurement but also envisions joint undertaking of future maintenance projects. Hanwha Ocean is committed to working with over 200 domestic partner companies to find optimal solutions for national interests and the security protection of allies.”
Hanwha Ocean recently signed up MOUs with Canadian defense companies for the upcoming CPSP (Canadian Patrol Submarine Project). The Canadian government is preparing to invest 60 billion Canadian dollars (approximately 58 trillion won) to order 12 submarines to replace its Victoria-class submarines. It is expected that countries including South Korea, Japan, France, Germany, Spain and Sweden will participate in the bidding process.
HD HHI plans to partake in CPSP. The company has signed a technical cooperation agreement with Babcock Canada during MADEX 2023. Also, HD HHI plans to expand its collaboration with other Canadian defense companies for CPSP.
Furthermore, HD HHI has recently signed a MOU with Polish National Defense company, PGZ(Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa, Polish Armement Group) for Orka Project of the Polish Navy. Through the MOU, the two companies agreed on mutual cooperation for the Orka project, and agreed to discover areas of future collaboration in the maritime domain.
HD HHI has built 6 of the 9 Sohn Won-yil-class submarines of the ROK Navy (also known as Type 214 / KSS-II) and is co-designer and builder of the 3 KSS-III submarine.
Source: Naval News