South Korea’s defense company Hanwha Defense has joined forces with a high-profile Australian steelmaker to build armored combat vehicles and self-propelled howitzers for international markets. Hanwha Defense signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on February 7 with Bisalloy Steels, a specialist performance steel manufacturer and supplier headquartered in New South Wales, Australia. Under the agreement, Hanwha Defense will procure BisalloySteel for its signature land defense platforms, such as the Redback Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) and the K9 Self-Propelled Howitzer (SPH), for exports to international markets beyond Australia.
“We are very excited to expand cooperation with Bisalloy Steels for international markets, as we have been delighted with Bisalloy steel’s proven quality through the performance of the Redback IFV. We will explore ways to use Bisally steel further for the K9 Self-Propelled Howitzer, as well as the Redback IFV. Upon the recent contract with Egypt over the K9, in particular, we will review ways to utilize the Australian steel for the K9A1EGY project first,” said Mr. Son Jae-il, CEO and President of Hanwha Defense.
“We’re pleased to work closely with Hanwha Defense and enter its global supply chain. Bisalloy steels capability has been proven over its 40-year history, and through working together we believe we will contribute to Hanwha’s product portfolio and its international business,” said Mr.Michael Gundy, Managing Director of Bisalloy Steels. “We look forward to expanding our business with Hanwha in the years ahead.”
Bisalloy Steel is one of the Australian Industrial Capability (AIC) partner firms for Hanwha Defense Australia, which is participating in Commonwealth’s LAND 400 Phase 3 program with the Redback IFV. Both companies will also conduct joint technical analysis and development of integration of Bisally steel into the Redback and K9 for exports to the market of Europe and others. Armored steels are a crucial component of army strength, while demand for establishing a secondary supply chain in critical materials is forecast to accelerate due to the pandemic and increasing security threats. The MoU between Hanwha Defense and Bisalloyprovides a practical example of how to cope with the potential supply chain risk