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Hai Kun

Taiwan has achieved a significant milestone with the launch of its domestically made submarine at the Kaohsiung port. Named “Hai Kun,” which literally translates to “Sea Kun,” this submarine carries historical and strategic significance.

This topic of “Hai Kun” is important from the perspective of the UPSC IAS Examination, which falls under General Studies Portion.

The “Hai Kun” Submarine

  • Name: The submarine is aptly named “Hai Kun,” drawing its name from the Kun fish, a creature with legendary proportions found in Chinese literature.
  • Legendary Symbolism: The choice of naming it after the Kun fish carries symbolism and historical resonance, symbolizing its significance in the eyes of the Taiwanese.

Significance

The launch of the “Hai Kun” submarine is laden with multiple layers of significance:

Taiwan’s First Domestically Made Submarine

  • The “Hai Kun” marks a groundbreaking achievement as Taiwan’s first domestically constructed submarine. This accomplishment reflects Taiwan’s growing self-reliance and capability in advanced military technologies.

A Major Breakthrough

  • The successful launch and eventual deployment of the “Hai Kun” will signify a major breakthrough for Taiwan, not only in shipbuilding but also in submarine design and manufacturing.
  • The seven-year endeavor represents a substantial investment of resources, expertise, and effort.

Response to Beijing’s Threats

  • Taiwan’s decision to build its submarines is a strategic response to the ongoing threats from Beijing. China has consistently opposed Taiwan’s efforts to acquire submarines from foreign nations through both economic and diplomatic pressure.
  • The development of domestically produced submarines is seen as a way to bolster Taiwan’s defense capabilities and reduce its dependence on external sources for military equipment.

The CSBC Corporation

  • The construction of the “Hai Kun” submarine was led by the CSBC Corporation, a Taiwanese shipbuilding company with a strong track record in maritime technology.

Timeline

  • Design and Construction: The journey from design to the successful launch spanned seven years, highlighting the complexities involved in creating a state-of-the-art submarine.
  • Future Plans: If tests and further development are successful, Taiwan plans to build another submarine. The deployment of both submarines is anticipated by 2027, signaling a significant enhancement of Taiwan’s naval capabilities.

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