Vietnam wants to modernize its aging fleet of tanks or replace them with modern ones. Sputnik discussed the issue with editor-in-chief of journal Arsenal of the Motherland and former tank battalion commander Viktor Murakhovsky.

T-72B3 tank

Soviet-made tanks are the backbone of Vietnam’s armored forces, but they are old and need to be replaced with new and more advanced fighting vehicles.

The cost of a radical renewal of the country’s entire tank fleet is prohibitively high though. Fully aware of this the Vietnamese are now thinking of buying a limited number of modern tanks from Russia and upgrading their old ones to bring them up to speed with the demands of modern warfare.
“Vietnam has about 1,500 medium tanks and around 1,000 light ones. All of them were developed shortly after WWII and are no match for what Vietnam’s neighbors, above all China, now have. Keeping them in good shape is not easy as spare parts for them are increasingly hard to get these days,” Murakhovsly said.
He added that even in Russia, modernized T-72 and T-72B3 tanks sell at around $1.3 million apiece and even with minimum export overheads the price would climb to $1.5 million.
“As for the T-55 and T-62 tanks, they will cost at least half a million dollars and twice as much with dynamic protection, a modern fire control system, a thermal sight and a system to fire antitank missiles through the cannon,” Murakhovsky added.
He noted that the Vietnamese have to choose between repairing their old tanks and buying limited number of modern T-72B3s or their analogues, to deploy on potentially dangerous strategic areas or to radically upgrade what they have now.
“It is up to the Vietnamese side to decide, of course, but I think that buying modern tanks and getting rid of some of their outdated ones would be the right way to go,” Viktor Murakhovsky said in conclusion.
According French defense group DCNS of the country is touted capable corvettes Gowind class replacement submarine hunting for missile escort vessel class versatile Sigma 9814 that Vietnam Navy pause buy because the cause is said to be too high unit price. In addition, the Couach shipyard also offers Vietnam with high-speed patrol vessels recently sold to India, and the company CNIM Socarenam with 3 lander EDA-R, Piriou with patrol boats.

Remarkably, a few years ago Gowind corvette class Navy French Republic visited the port of Haiphong, Vietnam. This is the first visit to Vietnam Gowind class since it was put into use. At that time, there are suggestions that the French put Gowind visit is also offering this form of modern ships.

Gowind is a versatile class ships are designed with 3 different configurations including: frigates, missile boats and escort offshore patrol vessels. The ship is designed as should the switch module configuration tasks fairly easy to train.

The vessel has a length from 85-105m, recreational water quality ranged from 1000-2500 tons, equipped with a propulsion system combining diesel - gas turbines for a maximum speed of 25 knots/h, range 6.900km and economic speed 15 knots/h.

Gowind hydrodynamic design is quite unique with high stealth capability, ships superstructure pretty fancy with pyramidal structure, designed chamber commander somewhat triangular spearhead toward before, not flat like the ship design are assessed khac.Thiet likely scatter radar waves are high, which helps ships with stealth features Vietnamese advantages than other ships.
Characteristics of France's defense technology sensor systems, ultra-modern electronics. Naturally Gowin is no exception, the mast is designed inside pyramid radar equipped scouting SMART-S Mk2 3D with search range of up to 250km target with the ability to control up to 500 entries pepper. In particular, this radar is said to be able to detect stealth aircraft the B-2 or F-22.
In addition, guards rocket ship Gowind class equipped combat management system SETIS with advanced automation capabilities enable effective response to different types of targets.
Extreme close-up cockpit equipped with dense iron-definition color screen, display specifications of the vessel Maritime Gowind while visiting Haiphong.
Guardians Gowind vessels capable of strongly anti-submarine equipped with sonar underbody Kingklip system, sonar systems measure every Captass depth.

Regarding weapons, designed custom Gowind variety comfortably equipped for customers to choose. However, both the 1000 and 2500 configure basic Gowind will share anti-ship missiles and anti-aircraft missiles, and the other only in terms of quantity. Accordingly, the main anti-ship weapons would be MM40 Exocet cruise missiles hit a range of 180km Block 3, which combines inertial navigation and active radar. Missiles carrying warheads weighing 165kg explosives powerful enough to sink ships with tonnage up to 5,000 tons.

About rooms, Gowind class escort vessel equipped with systems equipped with VLS launcher Sylver vertical launch tubes use 16 missiles MBDA VL-MICA air defense range of 12km. The missile is guided by active radar or infrared with good anti-jamming capability

Aft deck with hangars for helicopters weighing 5 tons, this deck is capable of receiving helicopters with load of about 10 tonnes. Gowind have the support system to allow unmanned helicopter works well.

India will get a strategic toehold in the South China Sea (SCS) region as its new satellite monitoring station in Vietnam is expected to be activated soon and linked to another existing facility in neighbouring Indonesia, amid China’s growing ambitions in the area.

Delhi has set up a Data Reception and Tracking and Telemetry Station at Ho Chi Minh City in southern Vietnam. The Indian Space Research Organisation will activate it soon and link it up with another station at Biakin Indonesia, official sources said.

The latest space facility will essentially help ISRO track satellites launched from India and receive data from them. India also has a satellite tracking station in Brunei. It has spent about $23 million (Rs 152 crore) to set up the facility in Ho Chi Minh City.

It will be an important strategic asset for India in the SCS region, which has been at the centre of tensions between China and particularly Vietnam and the Philippines over the past few years. Some other Southeast Asian nations besides India, the US and Japan have expressed their concerns over China’s aggressive tactic in SCS through which is the gateway for a significant portion of global trade.

India since 2014 has consistently argued in favour of freedom of navigation and over-flight in the SCS region amid China’s territorial claims and creation of artificial islands. China’s move has been protested by both Vietnam and the Philippines as its construction activities fall in their waters and exclusive economic cone.

Tensions are once again on the rise after China landed a plane on an artificial island it has built in a contested part of the SCS, prompting Vietnam to accuse Beijing of “serious infringement” of its sovereignty. The SCS is rich in natural resources. It is also a major shipping lane.

Sauce for the Sea Not Sauce for the Border?

It is indeed welcome that India is securing a satellite monitoring centre in Vietnam. It will enhance India’s role in southeast Asia and help both India and the countries of the region. At the same time, the question arises, as to why, if India can monitor the seas far away from our shores via satellite, why can’t we monitor infiltration across the Indo-Pak border using sophisticated satellite imagery, at least as a supplementary input to those monitoring border security

Aircraft Plant in Komsomolsk-on-Amur  have name Yuri Gagarin sent to Vietnam couple of Su-30MK2 multipurpose fighters next. In contract signed in August 2013, the Vietnam Air Force must get 12 of these fighters. 8 aircraft have already been received by the customer (board numbers 8583-8590 "red"), 4 of them - this year (2016).

An Indonesian parliamentary committee that oversees the country's defence procurement budget has approved a request by the Indonesian Air Force (Tentara Nasional Indonesia - Angkatan Udara, or TNI-AU) to acquire air-launched missiles worth USD38 million.

A TNI-AU source told IHS Jane's on 30 December that the systems approved for acquisition are namely the Kh-31A and Kh-31P short-range air-to-surface missiles (USD24 million), the Kh-59ME powered stand-off weapon (USD18 million), and the AIM-120 advanced medium range air-to-air missile (AMRAAM) (USD6 million).

The Royal Thai Navy's (RTN's) Coastal Defence Command is replacing a number of the service's coastal guns with long-range missiles and is currently reviewing several options.

According to a senior RTN official who was speaking at the Coastal Surveillance conference held on 1-2 December in Kuala Lumpur, the replacements are being sought in light of advances in naval weapons technology that put a number of important infrastructures on Thailand's eastern seaboard at risk.

"As a result, the RTN intends to replace our coastal guns [with] long-range missiles that have better range and [are] more accurate", said Captain Panuwat Samakgarn, Deputy Director of the RTN's Combatant Capability Planning and Development Division.

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