Although the US has approved the marketing license required for US manufacturers to sell Taiwan the technology needed to build domestic submarines, the move could prove largely symbolic if the nation lacks the ability to undertake system integration, parts assembly and testing, experts said yesterday.
The US Department of State’s approval of the marketing license is a major breakthrough for Taiwan’s goal of developing its own submarines, the Ministry of National Defense said on Saturday, while expressing gratitude to the US government for helping Taiwan upgrade its self-defense capabilities.
The Presidential Office and the ministry thanked the US for its commitment to the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA), which requires the US to provide Taiwan with arms and services of a defensive nature.
Although the US has continuously insisted on a peaceful settlement of cross-strait differences based on the TRA, China’s frequent military maneuvers near Taiwan have prompted Washington to take measures to ensure Taipei can maintain a credible defense through either business sales or technology transfers, National Chengchi University Institute of International Relations director Arthur Ding (丁樹範) said.
US technology transfers to Taiwan have often been limited to those of a defensive nature, with front-end technologies excluded, Ding said.
In contrast, the granting of the marketing license could be interpreted as US support for Taiwan to build domestic submarines, Ding said.
However, under this sales model, Taiwan has to manage and control downstream supply chain operations, such as system integration, he said, adding that if the government really wants to develop an indigenous defense industry, it needs clearer policies regarding budget allocation and investment.
The marketing license could indeed facilitate the building of domestic submarines, but there could still be a long way to go, because the US might not supply all the technology or equipment needed for the submarine project, such as weapons, sonar and underwater communication systems, Asia-Pacific Defense magazine editor-in-chief Kevin Cheng (鄭繼文) said.
Two people were killed and another nine injured yesterday after being stung by hornets while hiking in New Taipei City’s Rueifang District (瑞芳), with officials warning against wearing perfume or straying from trails during the autumn to avoid the potentially deadly creatures. Seven of the hikers only sustained minor injuries after being stung along the Bafenliao Hiking Trail (八分寮) and made their way down the mountain with a guide, the New Taipei City Fire Department said. Four of them — all male — sustained more serious injuries and were assisted when leaving the mountain, the department said. Two of them, a man surnamed
Recent movements by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) have been “highly unusual,” but the military maintains a grasp of the situation, Minister of National Defense Chiu Kuo-cheng (邱國正) said on Friday, after the military for the first time said it was monitoring troop movements in China’s Dacheng Bay (大埕灣). The minister gave the remarks to reporters before appearing at the legislature on the first day of its new session. The Ministry of National Defense on Thursday evening released an air force surveillance photograph of a PLA Shaanxi Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft, and said it was monitoring the PLA Rocket Force and ground
China’s Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Hong Kong has asked foreign consulates in Hong Kong to submit details of their local staff, which is more proof that the “one country, two systems” model no longer exists, a Taiwanese academic said. The office sent letters dated Monday last week to consulates in the territory, giving them one month to submit the information it requires. The move followed Beijing’s attempt to obtain floor plans for all properties used by foreign missions in Hong Kong last year, which raised concerns among diplomats that the information could be used for
‘ABNORMITY’: News of the military exercises on the coast of the Chinese province facing Taiwan were made public by the Ministry of National Defense on Thursday Taiwan’s military yesterday said it has detected the Chinese military initiating a round of exercises at a bay area in coastal Fujian Province, which faces Taiwan, since early yesterday morning and it has been closely monitoring the drills. The exercises being conducted at Fujian’s Dacheng Bay featured an undisclosed number of People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) warplanes, warships and ground troops, the Ministry of National Defense said in a press statement. The ministry did not disclose what kind of military exercises are being conducted there and for how long they would be happening, but it did say that it has been closely watching