Negotiations for the sale of FA-50 light fighter aircraft to the Philippines have made headway, raising possibility for a formal deal as early as next month, a local source said Friday.
The source at the Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), who declined to be identified, said a negotiating team has been dispatched to Manila to work out details related to the export deal, which could be worth $422 million.
“Details cannot be released at present, but understanding has been reached on many issues that can allow a formal contract to be signed as early as next month,” he said.
South Korea’s sole aircraft manufacturer has been engaged in talks for some time to sell 12 units of the FA-50 jet, which will be tasked with defending the island nation’s airspace.
The FA-20 is already in service with the South Korean Air Force, while a variant of the advanced trainer and light attack aircraft will be sold to Iraq.
Originally, KAI hoped for a deal late last year, but disagreements on payment, parts supply and the warranty period held up progress.
The South Korean aerospace company wanted Manila to pay 52 percent of the cost up front and said the warranty period should be kept to six months after delivery.
The Philippines, on the other hand, said it could pay 15 percent of the total before delivery, with the rest being handed over after the last of the planes are received. It had, moreover, asked for a warranty period of two years. (Yonhap)