South Korea

South Korea Military Stats


  • Air force > Combat aircraft: Number of fighter aircrafts (fixed wing aircrafts with combat capability).
  • Armed forces personnel: Total armed forces (2000)
  • Army > Attack helicopters: Number of attack helicopter (includes helicopters that have some attacking capabilities).
  • Army > Main battle tanks: Number of main battle tanks.
  • Budget: Annual defense budget in billion USD.
  • Expenditures > Percent of GDP: Current military expenditures as an estimated percent of gross domestic product (GDP).
  • Global Peace Index: The Global Peace Index is comprised of 22 indicators in the three categories ongoing domestic or international conflicts; societal safety; and security and militarization. A low index value indicates a peaceful and safe country.
  • Navy > Aircraft carriers: Number of aircraft carriers.
  • Navy > Corvette warships: Number of corvettes.
  • Navy > Submarines: Number of patrol boats (includes minesweepers).
  • Paramilitary personnel: Paramilitary.

    No date was available from the Wikipedia article, so we used the date of retrieval.

  • Personnel > Per capita: Armed forces personnel are active duty military personnel, including paramilitary forces if the training, organization, equipment, and control suggest they may be used to support or replace regular military forces. Per capita figures expressed per 1,000 population.
  • Service age and obligation: This entry gives the required ages for voluntary or conscript military service and the length of sevice obligation.
  • WMD > Missile: A description of the nation's situation with regards to the possession and manufacture of missile weapons of mass destruction
  • WMD > Nuclear: A description of the nation's situation with regards to the possession and manufacture of nuclear weapons
Air force > Combat aircraft 458 2012 1st out of 1
Armed forces personnel 683,000 2000 5th out of 166
Army > Attack helicopters 0.0 2012 1st out of 1
Army > Main battle tanks 2,429 2012 1st out of 1
Budget 41.1 US$ BN 2012 1st out of 1
Expenditures > Percent of GDP 2.7% 2006 34th out of 100
Global Peace Index 1.82 2013 7th out of 33
Navy > Aircraft carriers 0.0 2012 1st out of 1
Navy > Corvette warships 28 2012 1st out of 1
Navy > Submarines 18 2012 1st out of 1
Paramilitary personnel 3.5 million 2014 1st out of 147
Personnel > Per capita 14.35 per 1,000 people 2005 18th out of 160
Service age and obligation 20-30 years of age for compulsory military service, with middle school education required; conscript service obligation - 24-28 months, depending on the military branch involved (to be reduced to 18 months beginning 2016); 18-26 years of age for voluntary military service; women, in service since 1950, admitted to 7 service branches, including infantry, but excluded from artillery, armor, anti-air, and chaplaincy corps; some 4,000 women serve as commissioned and noncommissioned officers, approx. 2.3% of all officers 2008
WMD > Missile In December 1971, South Korean President Park Chung Hee issued a directive to reverse-engineer the US Nike Hercules air defense missile, a system that can also be used in a surface-to-surface role. Following several failures, South Korea's first successful test of its own version, known as "Paekkom," was conducted in September 1978. In 1979, South Korea entered into a bilateral agreement with the United States that limited South Korean ballistic missiles to a range of 180km with a 500kg payload. The Paekkom program was slashed in December 1982, but was restored in late 1983; an improved version of the Paekkom, called the "Hyonmu," was subsequently developed. South Korea joined the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) in March 2001; membership in the organization supersedes the missile-range agreement concluded earlier with Washington. In January 2002, South Korea announced procurement of the 300km-range Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) from the United States; South Korea will buy 110 ATACMS by 2004. Seoul is also developing a space launch vehicle with a plan to place a small satellite into low-earth orbit in 2005. 2005
WMD > Nuclear South Korea first became interested in nuclear technology in the 1950s but did not begin construction of its first power reactor until 1970. Changes in the international security environment influenced South Korea's decision to begin a nuclear weapons program in the early 1970s. Under significant pressure from the United States, Seoul abandoned the program and signed the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) in April 1975 before producing any fissile material. In November 1991, President Roh Tae Woo declared that South Korea would not "manufacture, possess, store, deploy, or use nuclear weapons." Two months later, North and South Korea signed the Joint Declaration on the Denuclearization of The Korean Peninsula. However, both sides have failed to implement its provision for a bilateral inspection regime. South Korea is an executive board member of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO) and is providing most of the financial support for the construction of two light water nuclear reactors in North Korea under the Agreed Framework. Seoul has 18 nuclear power reactors in use and two more under construction. 1991

SOURCES: Wikipedia: List of countries by level of military equipment (List); IISS (International Institute for Strategic Studies). 2001. The Military Balance 2001-2002. Oxford: Oxford University Press; All CIA World Factbooks 18 December 2003 to 18 December 2008; http://www.visionofhumanity.org/#/page/indexes/global-peace-index, Global Rankings. Vision of Humanity.; Wikipedia: List of countries by number of military and paramilitary personnel (The list); World Development Indicators database; The Nuclear Threat Initiative


"South Korea Military Stats", NationMaster. Retrieved from http://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/profiles/South-Korea/Military

  • South Korea has ranked last for arms trade > arms exports, top countries since 2003.
  • South Korea ranked second for armed forces personnel amongst High income OECD countries in 2000.
  • South Korea ranked #5 for manpower fit for military service > males age 16-49 amongst Densely populated countries in 2013.