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Taiwan Air Force plans to spend US$1 billion on bases, missiles

Military wants to fix runways, upgrade Patriot missile arsenal

An F-16V jet taking part in the Han Kuang 37 drills Wednesday. 

An F-16V jet taking part in the Han Kuang 37 drills Wednesday.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — As the annual Han Kuang wargames proceed into their third day Wednesday (Sept. 15), reports said the Air Force had budgeted NT$33 billion (US$1.19 billion) on repairing airport runways and acquiring missiles.

The 37th edition of the Han Kuang live-fire maneuvers featured jets landing and taking off on a provincial highway Wednesday to show the Air Force’s readiness to meet the challenge from China. Over the past year, aircraft from China’s People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) have been intruding into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) regularly.

Following plane procurement and upgrade plans, the Air Force is now turning its attention to the airfields necessary to help the aircraft take off and land, the Liberty Times reported. The budget includes NT$18.4 billion to be spent on strengthening runways and upgrading airport facilities at several bases across the country.

From 2020 to 2031, NT$15.3 billion will be budgeted to change parts for 384 Patriot PAC-3 missiles. In addition to procuring weapons from the United States, the military will also buy Sky Bow III missiles from Taiwan’s National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST, 中科院).

Updated : 2021-09-24 20:49 GMT+08:00