New Delhi, Feb 21 (IANS): The recent surfacing of images of the J-10C fighter jets with the marking of the Pakistan Air Force on social media seems to have verified a widely-circulated hearsay that Pakistan ordered advanced J-10C fighter jets from China, Chinese state media reported.
While there has been no official confirmation about Pakistan's purchase of J-10C jets, Pakistani Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed announced at the end of last year that the Pakistan Air Force would perform a fly-past using 25 J-10C fighter jets to be imported from China during Pakistan's Republic Day parade on March 23, Global Times reported.
Unsurprisingly, much of the attention from the media has focused on how the latest acquisition of the supersonic jets could boost Pakistan's military and national defence.
While it is unknown whether the J-10C deal will involve supply chain transfer or other areas of cooperation, the jets' usage and maintenance will have the potential to accelerate an upgrade Pakistan's defense industry.
China and Pakistan have a long history of cooperation when it comes to joint development and manufacturing of the light fighter project. In fact, the JF-17 Thunder, also known as FC-1 Xiaolong, which was jointly developed by the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex and Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group of China, has already become a good example as to how defense cooperation between the two friendly peoples has enhanced the manufacturing strength in Pakistan, Global Times reported.
After years of research and development partnership with Chinese peers, Pakistan's aviation industry has registered a considerable improvement. Now Pakistan has the capability to independently manufacture the Xiaolong fighter aircraft, which is uncommon among developing countries, the report claimed.