Poland signs $1.6bn deal with South Korea for Chunmoo rocket artillery systems and missiles

Poland signs $1.6bn deal with South Korea for Chunmoo rocket artillery systems and missiles
Poland has agreed to purchase 72 Chunmoo rocket artillery systems. / Wikipedia
By Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw April 29, 2024

Poland has entered into a PLN6.4bn ($1.6bn) agreement with South Korea to purchase 72 Chunmoo rocket artillery systems and thousands of tactical guided missiles, the country’s defence ministry said on April 25.

This agreement builds upon two previous contracts signed in late 2022, under which Poland acquired just over 500 Chunmoo launchers from the South Korean defence company Hanwha Aerospace. These are scheduled for delivery by 2027.

In line with the new contract, 12 of the launchers will be manufactured in South Korea, with the remaining 60 to be produced in Poland, according to Poland’s IAR news agency.

“The agreement will significantly enhance the capabilities of the Polish defence industry,” Poland's defence ministry said in a statement. 

“The technology transfer will enable local production, maintenance, and upgrades, and facilitate the manufacture of spare parts for these systems,” it also said.

In Poland, the system operates under the name HOMAR-K and consists of a Chunmoo launcher mounted on a Polish Jelcz chassis, tailored to meet the specific requirements of the Polish armed forces.

Jaeil Son, CEO of Hanwha Aerospace, underlined the deal's importance to regional security, stating it reflects the company’s “dedication to supporting the enhancement of security in Poland and the region, irrespective of political and societal changes”.

Following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Poland increased its defence spending to 4% of GDP, the highest rate in Nato. A significant portion of its military acquisitions has come from South Korea, including light combat aircraft, tanks and self-propelled howitzers.

Poland’s new government, which took over in December, hinted initially at cancelling at least some of the arms deals signed by predecessors but eventually decided to continue the policy of rapid modernisation and bulking up of the army.

With the war raging in neighbouring Ukraine for more than two years now, Poland is Nato’s most strategic country, as it also borders on Russia’s ally Belarus, and Russia itself to the northeast.

Poland also is the strategic logistics hub of military and humanitarian help for Ukraine.