Home Asia Pacific After tanks and light fighters, Poland buying South Korean Chunmoo MLRS

After tanks and light fighters, Poland buying South Korean Chunmoo MLRS

K239 Chunmoo MLRS
Photo: Hanwha Defense

Poland has completed negotiations with South Korea on the purchase of K239 Chunmoo multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) developed by Hawnha Defense.

Poland’s defense minister Mariusz Błaszczak confirmed on Thursday that the country would be buying some 300 of the systems. According to previous reports, the cooperation could include transfer of technology agreements that would see the South Korean MLRS launchers integrated with Polish-developed Jelcz vehicles and Topaz combat manage systems.

Błaszczak further said in an interview with local i.PL that Polish industry would gain know-how in the production of missiles as part of the agreement.

Developed by Hanwha, the K239 Chunmoo entered service with the Republic of Korea Army in 2013 and is capable of firing 130mm and 230 mm munitions. The 239mm has a stated range of some 80 kilometers, with some reports indicating almost double that range.

Poland will use the Chunmoo together with the US-built HIMARS launchers already in service. The country announced in May this year its intention to buy an additional 500 M142 HIMARS launchers that would equip more than 80 Polish Army batteries. The country’s defense ministry has been on a shopping spree this year, accelerating its purchases in the wake of the Russian invasion in Ukraine.

Poland is buying South Korean MLRS after the two countries formalized an official agreement for Poland’s purchase of K2 Black Panther tanks and K9 self-propelled howitzers in deals worth around $5.7 billion. South Korea will also be delivering 48 FA-50 light combat aircraft to Poland.

It is worth noting that just as is the case with the multiple launch rocket systems, Poland will operate tanks from both South Korea and the US, having placed an order for 250 M1A2 SEPv3 Abrams tanks earlier this year.