The Ministry of National Defense (MND) yesterday refused to comment on a report in US-based Defense News the previous day that claimed that Taiwan was developing a new type of anti-ship cruise missile.
In a report titled “Taiwan Anti-Ship Missile Plan Place China’s Navy in Cross Hairs,” Defense News said that an unnamed Taiwanese defense industry source had informed it that the Taiwanese military was planning to build an extended-range anti-ship missile, possibly a variant of the Hsiung Feng III (HF-3) “Brave Wind” -surface-to-surface missile.
Once developed, the military would deploy the new missile on the eastern side of Taiwan and direct it across the Taiwan Strait at the Chinese coast, it said.
The 300km range HF-3, designed by the Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (CSIST, 中山科學研究院), was first unveiled in 2007. At the Taipei Aerospace and Defense Technology Exhibition in August last year, the missile was advertised as an “aircraft carrier killer,” widely seen at the time as an attempt to send a strong signal to China as it prepared to launch its first aircraft carrier, the refurbished Varyag, which is expected to enter service on Aug. 1.
Taiwan test-fired a HF-3 into the Pacific Ocean southeast of Taiwan in the middle of June last year.
Citing the same source, the journal said that as part of a program codenamed Hsiang Yang, the HF-3s were deployed on board the nation’s eight Cheng Kung frigates. Another unnamed source at the ministry told Defense News there was no Hsiang Yang program, but said there were plans to deploy the anti-ship missile on both coasts, while denying an extended-range program was in the works.
Ministry spokesman David Lo (羅紹和) refused to comment on the report yesterday, adding that the ministry remained committed to defense strategies aimed at safeguarding the country. It is standard policy for the ministry not to comment on programs.
In addition to the HF-3, the military is also deploying shore-based HF-2 anti-ship missiles along its west coast, as well as air and ship-launched Harpoon missiles. Some of those missiles are equipped with coastal suppression systems that can hit land targets along the Chinese coast, the article said.
As the Taipei Times reported in February, the Taiwanese navy’s two Dutch-built Hailung-class submarines are being outfitted with UGM-84L Harpoon anti-ship missiles — the first time Taiwanese submarines will have the capability of firing missiles.
According to Defense News, China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy is especially vulnerable to submarine attacks, given its weak anti-submarine warfare capabilities.
Additional reporting by CNA, with translation by Stacy Hsu
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE: China might impose a blockade, conduct limited force operations, use an air and missile campaign, or resort to an invasion, the report said The US Department of Defense has identified four possible military courses of action that China could take against Taiwan, but did not offer any guess on when Beijing might be ready to act. In an annual report to the US Congress released on Tuesday titled Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China 2022, the department gave a broad overview of China’s military capabilities, strategy, ambitions and intentions. The report devoted significant space to developments related to Taiwan, against which it said China had intensified diplomatic, economic, political and military pressure last year. For example, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA)
Taipei on Friday rejected Hanoi’s characterization of its recent live-fire drill near Itu Aba Island (Taiping Island, 太平島) as “illegal,” saying that Taiwan’s claim to the small island in the South China Sea was “unquestionable.” The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said in a statement that the comments made by its Vietnamese counterpart about the military’s routine live-fire drills near Itu Aba on Tuesday were “unacceptable.” Earlier on Friday, Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang called Taiwan’s military activity “a serious violation of Vietnam’s territorial sovereignty,” saying it had caused tensions and complicated the situation in the region. Hang
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) is planning to offer advanced 4-nanometer chips when its new US$12 billion plant in Arizona opens in 2024, an upgrade from its previous public statements, after US customers such as Apple Inc pushed the company to do so, according to people familiar with the matter. TSMC is expected to announce the new plan when US President Joe Biden and US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo visit the facility near Phoenix for a ceremony on Tuesday next week, the people said. The TSMC plant had been slated to make 5-nanometer semiconductors, a standard that would be far
PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE MEETING: The statement by the former US representative came as Congress is poised to back US$10 billion to bolster Taiwan’s self-defense capabilities Former US representative Will Hurd yesterday said visiting Taiwan has made him realize that China’s “one country, two systems” framework is not a feasible solution for Taiwan. Hurd, who is visiting Taiwan with an international delegation, made the remarks when meeting with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) at the Presidential Office in Taipei. There is bipartisan support for Taiwan in Washington, with Republicans and Democrats agreeing that only the 23.5 million Taiwanese can decide the nation’s future, said Hurd, a trustee at the Washington-based German Marshall Fund think tank. Former German lawmaker Marieluise Beck said that the Russian invasion of Ukraine has changed mindsets