Pakistan will acquire 110 latest JF-17 Thunder fighter jets from China as the two countries forge closer economic and defence cooperation following President Xi Jinping’s visit here earlier this week, a media report said on Saturday.
Radio Pakistan reported that China will deliver the first batch of 50 jets over a period of three years.
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The Head of Chinese Aircraft Industry told a Chinese daily that under the contract signed between the two countries, Pakistan will receive a total of 110 JF-17 Thunder fighter aircraft from China.
It is not clear when the delivery of the remaining 60 jets will be completed.
The JF-17 Thunder is also built in Pakistan as China has already transferred its technology. But Pakistan needs more fighter jets at faster pace due to its fight against Taliban militants.
Xi also launched a USD 46 billion economic corridor to link China’s western region to Pakistan’s Gwadar port on the Arabian Sea.
During Xi’s visit, a fleet of eight JF-17 jets escorted the special aircraft of the Chinese president when it entered Pakistan’s airspace.
The two countries signed 51 agreements to boost economic cooperation during Xi’s trip.
Earlier, reports said China would provide eight latest submarines to Pakistan, more than doubling its fleet, in a deal worth USD 4-5 billion.