Turkey’s Minister of National Defense Yaşar Güler confirmed that an agreement is about to be signed for Pakistan's participation in its National Combat Aircraft (MMU) project that aims to develop an advanced fighter named “KAAN.”
“They (the U.S.) did not give us the F-35. This encouraged us to build our own plane. In a way, they did us a favor. We also produce KAAN. Friendly and brotherly countries are also making efforts to become partners in this project. An agreement was signed with Azerbaijan, there are other countries to be signed with Pakistan as well. They will come too,” Güler was quoted as saying by SavunmaSanayiST.com.
The Pakistan Aeronautics Complex, Kamra (PAC-K) may partner with Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) for the purpose.
TAI announced during IDEF 2023 in July that Azerbaijan had joined the KAAN project without specifying the extent of its involvement. If Pakistan joins, it will be the second foreign partner.
Pakistan already has experience in aircraft building with participation having successfully executed the JF-17 project along with China.
Pakistan has close relationship with Turkey in terms of defense technology. The JF-17 is kitted with a targeting pod from Turkish firm, Aselsan. Islamabad is reported to have purchased Turkish drones besides participating in warship building.
As per reports, Islamabad will be tasked with manufacturing multiple subsystems for the KAAN fighter.