Taiwan is preparing for a mass production of two kinds of cruise missiles to set off against the perceived threat from the mainland, writes defense expert Wendell Minnick in Defense News. The US has been trying, for now in vain, to kill the program.
Taiwan’s Deputy Defense Minister Chao Shih-chang told legislators on Nov. 8 that production for the two missiles [ of the Hsiung Feng 2E (HF-2E) land attack cruise missile (LACM) and the Hsiung Feng 3 (HF-3) anti-ship cruise missile (ASCM)] had already begun. Chao made the comments during questioning by the Legislative Yuan’s Foreign and Defense Committee. In response to a question about the missiles by legislator Lin Yu-fang of the ruling party Kuomintang (KMT), Chao said the programs, code-named the Chichun (Lance Hawk) and Chuifeng (Chasing Wind), were “progressing smoothly.”…
China continues to deploy more short-range ballistic missiles (SRBM) and new cruise missiles along its coast targeting Taiwan. The only alternative is to deploy a counter response to that threat, he said. China currently has roughly 1,300 to 1,500 SRBMs aimed at the island. Taiwan has no offensive missile capability, [according to an official with the Ministry of National Defense (MND)]
The HF-2E could “be a tactical deterrent and strategic bargaining chip in possible military confidence-building measures” with China, said the analyst.