South Korean fighter KF-21 Boramae made its first flight

(ORDO NEWS) — With the help of the new fighter, Seoul wants to reduce its dependence on Washington and demonstrate its capabilities to Pyongyang.

South Korea has conducted the first successful flight of the new KF-21 Boramae fighter jet, developed by Korea Aerospace Industries in cooperation with Indonesia, writes Korea JoongAng Daily.

The KF-21 stayed in the sky for 30 minutes, starting from the air force base in Sacheon, Gyeongsangnam-do province, south of the country’s capital.

Before mass production, which is scheduled for 2026, the aircraft will have to undergo additional tests and make about two thousand more sorties.

The project cost almost $6.7 billion, Jakarta invested 20 percent, but there were problems with the timeliness of payments.

In addition, the development time was delayed due to the refusal of the Americans to share technology patents.

According to the media, Seoul wants to get a “fourth and a half” generation fighter as a cheaper and less secretive alternative to the F-35 Lightning II from the American corporation Lockheed Martin – both for its own Armed Forces (at least 40 vehicles by 2028 and 120 by 2032) and for deliveries to other countries.

So far, South Korea, a close defense ally of the United States, has been actively purchasing F-35A stealth fighters.

Do not forget about the desire of the republic to strengthen its combat potential against the background of “threats” from its neighbor – North Korea, which, according to open data , has about 1.1 thousand military aircraft and helicopters.

Among them are both modern models and the Soviet multi-role fighter of the fourth generation MiG-29.

With the successful deployment of the KF-21, the Republic of Korea will be the eighth country to develop an advanced supersonic fighter itself, the United States, China , Japan , France , Sweden and Europe as a whole.

Seoul recently spent money on modernizing its aircraft, successfully testing two submarine-launched ballistic missiles and its first Nuri rocket , designed to accelerate the development of the space program.

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