Local orders and exports both essential for the South African defence industry

Local orders are key to winning export contracts in the defence sector, Denel Land Systems (DLS) CEO Stephan Burger affirmed at the Aerospace, Maritime and Defence Conference in Pretoria on Thursday. He cited the case of the order his company received for turrets for the Malaysian Army’s new armoured fighting vehicle, the AV8. These turrets were developed as part of the South African Army’s Project Hoefyster ("Horseshoe") to acquire a new infantry fighting vehicle. The resulting vehicle is called the Badger, and, although the hull is based upon a Finnish design (the Patria AMV), the different types of turret that will equip the five different variants of the vehicle, and the weapons they carry, are South African designs. The entire Badger vehicle and most of its systems are made in South Africa.