South Korea to Award Tanker Contract by the Fall

South Korea hopes to award a contract for its KC-X program by the fall, announced Lt. Gen. Hyungchul Kim, the Republic of Korea Air Force vice chief of staff, during a Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies event in Arlington, Va., last week. South Korea will decide among Boeing’s KC-46, EADS A330, and a modified Boeing 767 airliner offered by the Israeli Aerospace Industries to be its aerial refueling tanker, said Kim. Currently, ROKAF, which has no tankers of its own, must coordinate with US forces to refuel its fighter jets and other aircraft for deployments beyond the Korean Peninsula. However, Kim said South Korea hopes it will be able to participate in more humanitarian missions and other exercises, such as Red Flag Alaska, once its tanker becomes operational in the 2017-2018 timeframe.