Surface Forces: China Helps Indonesia Develop Weapons


April 14, 2011: China has agreed to help Indonesia establish weapons development and production capabilities. The initial project will develop and produce 1,000 122mm rockets for the navy. The Indonesian space agency (LAPAN) will contribute some of its research. These R122 rockets are simple devices, with a range of 15 kilometers. Eventually, Indonesia would like to add guidance systems.

But meanwhile, what Indonesia is more interested in is advancing to the production of more complex weapons like the Chinese C802A anti-ship missiles. Indonesia has been buying these from China for the last three years. The C802A is a 6.8m (21 foot) long, 360mm, 682kg (1,500 pound) missile, with a 165kg (360 pound) warhead. The C802 has a max range of 120 kilometers, and moves along at about 250 meters a second. The French Exocet missile is the same size and performance, but costs twice as much (over a million dollars each, but the manufacturer is known to be flexible on pricing.) The Indonesians see the Chinese missiles as a much better deal, especially since Indonesia is not looking to start a war anytime soon. So why pay premium prices for a premium, battle proven, Exocet. The C802 is older technology, and Iran produces them in cooperation with China.

The Exocet has been around for over three decades, has been proven in combat and is known to be reliable. The C802 is known to be less capable than the Exocet, but it looks similar. For a navy that never expects to get into a serious war, that, and a much lower price, is enough to get the sale.




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