As Japan’s defense industry struggles, South Korea’s is thriving, driven not only by the need to counter Pyongyang's growing military threats but also by Seoul's ambition to make the country one of the world's top defense exporters.

Just how determined the government is to help the industry expand was highlighted in recent statements made by President Yoon Suk-yeol, who last month expressed his intention to make his country one of the world's top four weapons suppliers.

"By entering the (list of the) world's top four defense exporters after the United States, Russia and France, the defense industry will become a strategic industrialization and a defense powerhouse," Yoon said.