Egypt has tendered the plans for producing the South Korean K9 self-propelled howitzer locally.
Cairo plans to begin production of the K9 howitzer in 2023, and will eventually involve 67% of components being produced locally.
Mohamed Ahmed Morsi, the country’s minister of state for military production told reporters in an interview published on 18 June.
Mohamed Ahmed Morsi said the Cairo is currently equipping the factory and training workers as part of the first phase of an agreement that will last five years.
Morsi noted that Egypt hopes to sell the K9s to Arab and African countries, as well as meet the needs of its own military. “We have already started bilateral negotiations with a number of Arab and African countries that want to get the K9 because the cannon is the latest in the world,”
Egypt and South Korea signed a USD1.65 billion contract during the International Defence Exhibition & Conference (IDEX) held in Abu Dhabi in February 2021 for the production of unspecified numbers of the K9A1 EGY version of the howitzer and K10 ammunition vehicle.
An initial batch of the artillery will be delivered by Hanwa Defense, which will include a a new K11 fire-control vehicle, with the rest of the artillery and vehicles to be locally produced at Factory 200, a state-run defense manufacturing facility just outside the Egyptian capital by South Korea’s Hanwha Defense and companies affiliated with Egypt’s Ministry of Military Production (MOMP).
Significant progress was made in their negotiations in January, when President Moon Jae-in told local media on January 20, that South Korea and Egypt are on the final stage of discussions to co-producing the K2 Black Panther main battle tank in Egypt, and the acquisition of the K9 155mm self-propelled Howitzer from Hanwha Defense.
Hanwha Defense subsequently said a new K11 fire-control vehicle would also be developed for Egypt, which will receive an initial batch of howitzers made in South Korea from 2024, with the rest being locally produced.
Discussion by the two countries first began at the sidelines of the EDEX 2021 exhibition in Cairo.
Hanwha’s K9 howitzer is designed to provide effective and deep fire support across theaters, the K9 is capable of firing three rounds in under 15 seconds in a burst, or six to eight rounds per minute during sustained firing. Equipped with an unmanned automated turret, the K9A2 will be capable of firing nine to 10 rounds per minute.