Korea, Israel teaming up on drones

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Korea, Israel teaming up on drones

The Korean and Israeli governments agreed to help companies develop amphibious drones on Monday.

According to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, Minister Joo Hyung-hwan met with officials in Israel on Monday, and the two countries decided to cooperate on developing both unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology and wine viticulture.

The two governments have spent nearly $2 million a year to jointly work on research and development projects since 2001.

“The drone market is growing rapidly around the world, and this is why the two governments decided to fund the project,” said Kim Hong-joo, a director at the Trade Ministry. “The UAV will be able to land on water, and we expect the manufacturers to enter the global market together when the project is done,”

The two governments will start supporting the manufacturers in three months. Korean manufacturer Keva Drone and Israel’s Aerodrome are the two companies that will be funded.

For wine, the two governments will give money to Korea’s Mates and Israel’s AKOL to co-develop technology for wine production using big data. The Trade Ministry official said that the Chinese wine market is growing rapidly, and the amount of land it can use for viticulture is the second largest in the world. They expect these companies to become successful in China in the future.

“Korea’s technology for sensors and Israel’s long experience in viticulture will allow the two countries to enter the growing Chinese market,” Kim said. “Israel has leading technology in various areas such as drone and artificial intelligence. Korea needs to cooperate with other countries to develop new industries.”

BY KIM YOUNG-NAM [kim.youngnam@joongang.co.kr]
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