Force Modernisation and Integration
This chapter explores the nature of South Korea’s naval modernisation through an analysis of its platforms, force structure and training regimen. It shows that the ROKN is creating a force based on four interconnected outputs: multifunctionality, mobility, lethality and connectivity. In combination, the four outputs are designed to transform the ROKN into a force that can perform effective operations in relation to its current and future threat environments. This means that the ROKN is developing forces that have utility in both peninsular and non-peninsular contexts. What follows in this chapter is a description and assessment of the ROKN’s force modernisation since 1993. Surface, subsurface and aviation capabilities are first examined with a combined analysis of new weapon and sensor systems. The ROKN’s current and future structure is then explored to assess how new capabilities are being integrated into the fleet. This allows for an assessment of deployment and operational priorities. Finally, the ROKN’s training regime will be explored to assess what this reveals about current and future missions and capabilities. The chapter ends by arguing that the ROKN is developing a fleet with credible combat capabilities in all domains of naval warfare.