Indonesian aerospace firm CEO visits S. Korea amid probe over employee’s alleged KF-21 data theft

The chief of an Indonesian aerospace company involved in the joint KF-21 fighter jet development project has visited South Korea, officials said Friday, amid a probe over an employee of the company allegedly stealing data on the program. Gita Amperiawan, CEO of PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI), arrived in the country Thursday for a two-day trip to visit the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) and Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd. (KAI), according to the officials at DAPA and KAI. The visit took place as police are investigating the PTDI engineer's alleged attempt to take technologies related to the project at KAI's headquarters in Sacheon, 296 kilometers southeast of Seoul, in January. PTDI has dispatched engineers to KAI, the manufacturer of the KF-21, after Indonesia agreed to take part in the project launched in 2015 to develop the advanced supersonic fighter by 2026. A DAPA official said Amperiawan made the visit for talks on the joint development project but did not provide details. A KAI official also confirmed the visit, noting that it took place for discussions on future cooperation on the project. Jakarta's commitment to the program has been called into question over the years as it has failed to make timely contributions to the project despite agreeing to shoulder about 20 percent of the project's cost of 8.1 trillion won (US$6 billion) through 2026. Source: Yonhap News Agency

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