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South Korean KT-1 Woongbi for the Philippine Air Force?

It is known that an organization such as the Philippine Air Force is pushing to have more military assets that are essential for its desire to have a formidable deterrence needed to work on its duties and responsibilities such as those for the Philippine Air Defense Identification Zone or PADIZ as well as for its Close Air Support operations.

And with it comes an idea of providing pools of aspiring pilots more tools that will help enhance their skills in handling flying military assets which may help push the military branch's capabilities to the better, getting the sophisticated assets performing on their full potential from highly-skilled personnel.

AN OVERVIEW ON TRAINER AIRCRAFTS
KAI KT-1 Philippine Air Force.
This is an aircraft produced by Korean Aerospace Industries,
the same manufacturer of the FA-50PH that the Philippine
Air Force obtains.
The Philippine Air Force is in the process of Modernization which similarly goes with the other branches of the Armed Forces of the Philippines as they are seeking air assets that will supplant their duties and responsibilities before the nation as the protectors of the skies, in line with the service branch's Flight Plan 2028.

That includes the procurement of additional trainer aircraft which may provide the foundation for the Air Force's future pilots that will handle its sophisticated and formidable tools that will go hand-in-hand in performance and expertise needed especially if needed on combat situations that the country may partake, both internal and external ones that matter a lot for national defense.

Currently, the Philippine Air Force obtains a handful of SIAI/Marchetti AS-211 Basic Jet Trainers and SIAI/Marchetti SF-260 Light Trainer Aircraft, of which its variant also came with an attack variant such as the SF-260TP that the 15th Strike Wing obtains along with its fleet of OV-10s, AW-109s and soon-to-have Jordanian-donated AH-1s in its inventory, with the A-29 Super Tucano being the latest addition on their array of air assets.

These platforms are aging with the necessity of replacing these platforms is getting more important as time passes by. It is here that new military assets are being considered with the number of suppliers taking the interest to get a share of the Philippine defense market, especially within the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

On this discussion comes a supplier from South Korea which is also the one who supplied Philippine Air Force its Lead-in Fighter Trainers which can be also be considered as light combat aircraft that serves as an interim/step platform before the Multirole Fighter Jets on the process within the military branch. This is Korean Aerospace Industries' KT-1 Woongbi Trainer Aircraft.

KNOWING THE KOREAN AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES
A work-in-progress FA-50 unit which is intended for the Philippine
Air Force in the foreground.
Image Source: KAI via Flickr.
While we wrote articles before about the products made by the Korean Aerospace Industries such as these topics involving the KUH-1 Surion and several FA-50PH related ones, there are fewer discussions on those contents before that involves the manufacturer and its background which is the Korean Aerospace Industries. 

Before we proceed, it is ideal to read these articles which include the products made by this Korean defense company:
- "The Idea of Having KUH-1 Surion Combat Utility Helicopters in the Philippine Air Force", written July 9, 2017
- "Upgraded FA-50PH Jets for the Philippine Air Force?", written April 05, 2019
- "The Role of FA-50PH as Both Trainer and Light Fighter", written December 01, 2016, and
- "The Idea of Having BVR features in an FA-50 Lead-In Fighter Trainer Jet", written January 31, 2019.

The company was founded in 1999 after the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis in which revolutionizes the Korean defense industry especially with regards to aerospace matters at the turn of the century in which they produce a handful of military aerospace products, with several exported to several countries such as the Philippines.

Since then, it produces many aircraft that bolsters the Republic of Korea Air Force's capabilities to the extent that improves its self-reliance on the production of its aerospace assets in a sense that the local economy benefited from the developments being made in the country's defense industry as well as giving that needed support on sustaining its operations particularly in terms of their own aspects on maintenance and repair matters.

It is known that the company, Korean Aerospace Industries, at one point participated in the Philippine Air Force's Combat Utility Helicopter Acquisition Project as it offered the KUH-1 Surion Combat Utility Helicopter (see link above) on what might be the first export of such a product on a certain country, although it lost over the Sikorsky's offer that involves the delivery of 16 units of the S-70i Sikorsky Black Hawk Helicopters.

Meanwhile, it successfully secured a deal for the Philippine Air Force's Lead-in Fighter Trainer Jet Acquisition Project, of which it produced a squadron of FA-50PH (see links referenced above) that helps regain its jet capability since the F-5 A/B jets decommissioned fifteen years ago on 2005. Such a fleet of aircraft may get expanded later on as there is a prospect of adding these jets up as well as getting several units upgraded along the process.

These things are a reference regarding the Korean Aerospace Industry's performance on pitching its aircraft on the local Philippine Defense Market as they lost one project while they gain more on another. Their record on providing FA-50PH lead-in fighter trainer/light combat aircraft to the Philippine Air Force is something that may help them pitch their product for the country's basic trainer program.

SOME INSIGHTS THAT SHEDS LIGHT OVER THIS TOPIC
KT-1 Report South Korea KAI Philippine Air Force
This post points out South Korea's prospect of cooperating on
the Philippine Air Force Training Aircraft Acquisition Program.
Image screengrab from Marky Lumayag's Concerned Philippines
for AFP Modernization, referencing Glen Lee's data.
The prospects regarding this topic point out from a private defense group shown above, with the reference coming from a South Korean source that posts interesting data about South Korea's involvement through cooperation over the Philippine Air Force's Training Aircraft Acquisition Program.

For the entirety of that thread's conversation, kindly check the webpage screengrab in a link provided here which also came with several comments that shed insight regarding this development that correlates to the main point of the discussion covering the topic on this article.

It is here that the rationale relating to this topic of having KT-1 Woongbi as one of the candidates of the trainer aircraft project arose in which there goes the correlation regarding the Philippine Air Force's desire for cooperation with their South Korean counterparts for the Trainer Aircraft Acquisition Program.

From the main post down to the thread as provided in the linked screengrab, one may simply have an idea that it all points out to the KT-1 Woongbi being an option for the project that involves the procurement of Training Aircraft which in itself as a consideration among other prospective offers on the program.

Such development may mean a lot regarding the relations between South Korea and the Philippines especially that the former already provide much of its produced military assets to the country in such a manner that in the investment that the latter provided, they gave the tools that are needed for country's continuous development especially in the field of defense.

Hence, this development may provide an idea regarding the development of one of the projects that the Philippine Air Force pursues in which it matters on their capabilities which includes enhancing the skillsets for the pilots to have, along with the tools and military equipment that is being procured that makes a job done in terms of protecting national aerospace.

ON THE AIRCRAFT'S DEVELOPMENT AND SPECIFICATIONS
KT-1 Surion Subcomponents and Dimensions
Subcomponents and dimensions that define the KT-1 Woongbi.
Courtesy of Korean Aerospace Industries website.
Additional Information obtained from KAI's website:
MTOGW: 5,600lb (2.54t)
Empty Weight: 4,210lb (1.91t)
Power Plant: 950hp (max 1,150hp)
Max Speed: 350kt (648km/h)
G-Limit: -3.5/+7.0kg)

The development of this aircraft precedes that of the formation of the Korean Aerospace Industries as a current South Korean defense industry specialized in aerospace technology wherein it started its maiden flight eight years ago before such a formation, in the year 1991 that came at the end of the century.

Speaking of development, it started in the year 1988 in which South Korea seeks on having its first indigenously-developed aircraft wherein this was initiated by the South Korean Government's Agency for Defense Development or ADD together with the forerunner of the Korean Aerospace Industries which was considered a joint venture between South Korean companies through their aerospace divisions.

The first orders for the aircraft took place in 1999 of which the Republic of Korea Air Force (ROKAF) procured around 85 units plus another option for 15 units in which it rendered its service at the turn of the century, making the aircraft reputable within the South Korean military for the next two decades as well as paving the way for the Korean Aerospace Industries for improving its expertise more in terms of indigenously producing its aircraft.

Having these aircraft within the fleet of South Korea's Air Force means a lot for the country's pool of pilots that hones their skills further as such learning may also go augmented with other trainer aircraft that the Korean Aerospace Industries also produces such as the KC-100 "Naraon" basic trainer aircraft as well as the T-50 Golden Eagle in which the Philippine Air Force FA-50PH was based upon.

Aside from the Trainer-type Woongbi aircraft, the Republic of Korea Air Force also obtains a different variant of the KT-1 which in itself is armed with 12.7mm guns and LAU-131 Rocket Launchers which is the KA-1 Woongbi combat aircraft, although a far cry from the capabilities provided by an A-29 Embraer Super Tucano Close Air Support Aircraft that the Philippine Air Force may soon be having in its inventory.

These details are something that will set the foundation on the idea of having KT-1 Woongbi trainer aircraft that the Korean Aerospace Industries produces in the manner that another country like the Philippines may have such platform considered for its pool of pilots on its Air Force to hone more knowledge dealing with the skills needed on its operation.

ON THE OTHER PROPELLER-BASED AIRCRAFT THAT PAF OBTAINS
SF-260, SIAI Marchetti, Philippine Air Force
The Philippine Air Force obtains the SIAI/Marchetti SF-260 propeller aircraft
as its own basic trainer platform for pilots to hone basic skills
of flying.
Image Source.
The Philippine Air Force obtains a handful of aircraft wherein a portion of it consists of trainer aircraft which is essential for their operations as their duty comes to the necessity of learning skills such as flying an aircraft which in itself is a defining factor to the duties and responsibilities instilled to the organization as part of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

It is with that portion that the Air Force obtains a handful of SIAI/Marchetti SF-260 propeller aircraft which serves the organization through the years, providing the platform that an aspiring pilot may have for them to get on another step of getting the proficiency of flying more sophisticated aircraft along the way, ranging from Close-Air-Support aircraft to speedy multirole fighter jets.

Regarding this aircraft in the Philippine Air Force, it was purchased in the early 1970s wherein they procured 46 units of such aircraft which was divided into two variants, naming the SF-260Ms which are the military trainer aircraft that came with 32 units with the remaining 16 units being the SF-260W variants that are the tactical support version which is capable on conducting basic close air support operations.

It is worth taking note that the Philippine Air Force also have several of such aircraft converted into what is currently known as the SF-260TP variant wherein 18 units from the 46 delivered were upgraded under project "Layang", with its engines upgraded into the Allison Model 250 now currently known as the Rolls-Royce M-250 Turboshaft along with its capability of carrying more munitions (now up to four hardpoints from the original two) which makes it a more capable close in support aircraft.

Hence, this setup is something that helps the Philippine Air Force coping its capabilities up until the point that newer assets such as the A-29 Super Tucano coming in for the Close Air Support platforms while the propeller-based aircraft trainers may go augmented with the ones like the candidate for the project like the Korean Aerospace Industries KT-1 Woongbi.

TO SUM IT UP
Peru, Peruvian Air Force, KT-1 Woongbi, South Korea, Philippines, Philippine Air Force.
A Peruvian Air Force KT-1 Woongbi aircraft. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Things, as seen here, is as bright as other projects that are in the pipeline with the interest coming from an end-user such as the Philippine Air Force sees the interest of having such a platform intended for training purposes in a manner that the Korean Aerospace seeks opportunity with the hopes that their KT-1 Woongbi product may be ended up accepted along the way.

Let it be noted that with five countries currently using these aircraft (South Korea, Indonesia, Peru, and Turkey with additional orders from Senegal) makes it eligible for consideration, as well as having an assurance regarding the sources needed for spare parts especially in the case of the Philippines where it may benefit from neighboring Indonesia regarding this option.

Moreover, this development may help bolster the ties between both countries together especially in defense cooperation given that the South Koreans have already provided much of its produced military equipment which was produced at a number by several of its Defense Industries through the deals that benefit both the supplier and the end-user on their respective ends.

With the SIAI/Marchetti SF-260 basic trainer aircraft currently in service within the Philippine Air Force aging older which connotes increasing cost on its upkeep, perhaps this consideration may mean a lot for the service branch wherein they may have it augmented by these type of aircraft and eventually, replacing them along the way in a sense that it drives cost for maintenance and other operating expenses down.

Nevertheless, it remains to be seen regarding the developments of this option that involves the KT-1 Woongbi wherein developments that covers the Modernization activities of the Armed Forces of the Philippines may change along the way as factors ranging from economic output to internal decision-making affecting these setups for planning in the long run. 

Despite these things, the purpose still goes the same as the Armed Forces' desire to increase its capabilities wherein they also need training platforms that are meant to hone the skills of any aspiring personnel that may help them execute their actions that render such capability utilized at its utmost potential.
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Summary of the President's Press Conference on COVID-19

Last March 13, 2020, President Duterte provided what is to be the guidelines regarding handling the situation regarding the current pandemic that is sweeping across the globe with the Philippines has its own share of those who are affected wherein this discussion still scopes under defense-related matters with national welfare on health are considered as such, under CBRNE or Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive factors which means a lot for the people's welfare and security with regards to their current livelihoods.
This scenario involves CBRNE Capabilities or things that involve
Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive matters.
Image obtained from DVIDSHUB.

This information was made summarized through DND/AFP Modernization Updates and Review by an administrator named Emmanuel Zamora.

The Gist of the Presscon made by the office of the President are as follows:

1. Provincial quarantine if more than 2 positive COVID-19 cases

2. Work in the executive dept. is suspended, except for skeletal staff

3. Flexible work arrangement encouraged in the private sector. Manufacturing and retail businesses encouraged to stay open with social distancing and minimal workforce

4. Mass public transport shall continue operation with social distancing

5. Domestic air, sea, and land transport suspended from March 15, 2020 (12 midnight) to April 14, 2020, subject to the review of the inter-agency task force.

6. Code alert is now raised to Sublevel 2, the highest level

7. Stringent social distancing measures in NCR for 30 days

8. Suspension of classes in all levels in Metro Manila until April 12, 2020. Stay at home and study

9. Mass gatherings, either planned or spontaneous,...shall be prohibited during this period. If social distancing is no longer obeyed, if rules are disobeyed, this is punishable under the penal code and can be arrested by military and police

10. Community quarantine is hereby imposed in the entire of Metro Manila

11. In other areas, LGUs can impose localized quarantine

12. Baranggay-wide quarantine is advised if there are 2 or more COVID-19 cases

13. A municipality or city-wide quarantine will be advised if 2 positive COVID-19 cases or more

14. Not enough military and police to cover the whole country. Barangay Captain is the police. Barangay Captains can also go to prison if they don't enforce these regulations.

15. Close monitoring and reassessment of these regulations after 7 days from today

16. LGUs outside NCR advised to exercise sound discretion to suspend classes but does not allow you to suspend classes for trivial reasons

17. PNP and AFP shall be called upon for effective and orderly implementation of the above measures. This is not martial law. Do not be afraid of the PNP and AFP. They are there to help you.

18. Daily meetings of Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) and all relevant agencies

19. In social disturbance, the military will keep order

20. OFWs allowed to travel to Mainland China except to Hubei

21. If things deteriorate, we may have to ask for China's help

22. Entry travel restriction imposed to all countries with COVID-19 cases, except for Filipinos and their families, permanent visa holders, and diplomats

23. Purpose of this is to protect and defend you from COVID-19

24. AFP and PNP will maintain peace and order. Just follow.

25. Our COVID-19 cases relatively low but fast to rise. You will be asked to go to the hospital and seek treatment.

26. COVID-19 tests are free

27. I ask for your patience. Help each other. Everything is placed in jeopardy.

This detailed information is for everyone to be updated with regards to the current situation which affects daily routines that take place in the nation's capital which spans for at least a month. It is also at best to stay calm and be prepared at all times as well as not to spread any rumors that will spread fear along the way.

This article served as a reference for the current provided time.
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List - Military Assets Provided by the United States to the Philippines

The current developments surrounding the Visiting Forces Agreement came in a sense that naysayers are arguing lately that it went ineffective as well as to the overall help that the United States has provided to the Armed Forces of the Philippines regarding its capabilities that bolster the power that the country's military organization accrue through the years.

Hence, it is just as good to lay down the facts regarding the assets that the United States Provided in the sense that several of this military equipment is second-hand as well as brand new ones in a way that it dispels that their aid consists more of the former.
Things in the list include this C-130 Cargo aircraft that carries
troops, equipment, and relief goods in areas of concern such
as combat zones and disaster-stricken areas.
(c) Kit Agad, Jetphotos.
This list will contain deals, deliveries, and orders that took place between 1950 and 2018 which defines much regarding a country with its independence years post-Spanish, American and Japanese periods as well as with the bulk of its assets that covers much of the Cold War period spanning late 1940s down to the early 1990s.

The following information is obtained via the SIPRI Arms Transfers Database which they obtain a downloadable copy of what this page's content will be provided (link for the document here). 

As for the reason why this particular webpage exists despite having a downloadable copy is for the convenience of folks like you who read it here where it will not require such a download for the information to be provided as well as to have a ready-link for future reference use.

Also, this will set precedent on individual discussions which will be provided in the upcoming months in a way that different assets provided on the list may get discussed in detail later on especially on the benefits that reaped through the course of the bilateral relationships of these two close nations.

ASSETS PROCURED FROM 1950 - 2018
Click the image and zoom for mobile and tablet users or drag 
the image in a new tab for both laptop and desktop users.
Additional notes that will correct some details in the list provided are as follows - first, the Landing Ship Tanks (LST-1 class) were received and have got integrated into the fleet before the 1950s, and second, there are no Cannon-class Destroyer Escort from South Vietnam as opposed to the information provided. Credits to LCDR. Mark Condeno for this correction.

On the details provided in the report, it is simply showing that they provide much for the country's military capabilities which are worthy of a deterrent on both internal threats such as counterinsurgency and counterterrorist threats and external threats such as territorial defense from another nation that sees desire on encroaching that integrity and sovereignty that defines the whole country's jurisdiction and coverage of its authority.

Moreover, these assets such as the ones discussed on this blog website such as the S-70i Black Hawk Helicopters, AGM-65 Maverick Air-to-Ground Missiles, and M-113 Armored Personnel Carriers are something that the Armed Forces obtained recently, especially with the first two things mentioned with the third one obtaining recent upgrades on its weapons system which was done through an Israeli defense firm.

These military assets provided by the United States show that the relationships between two nations are strong through the years which came along with what is for both treaty allies are bounded at specifically before the scrapping of the Visiting Forces Agreement wherein they provided that technical support like in terms of surveillance through UAVs which is definitely different from the idea of them looking over the country's external defense as it is the responsibility of the country's armed forces to do such a job.

Hence, let these assets provided as well as their other ways of support be a reminder that both nations have these strong relations in the past as affirmed allies which may stay strong even in the current situations that hamper it on the lowest scale ever given the government's current stance. Nevertheless, one may still hope that things may go favorably in this decade particularly that these things matter a lot for the country's desire of having a firm minimum credible defense posture.
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