Azerbaijan Signs $1.6B Deal with Pakistan to Buy JF-17 Jets, Weapons & Training

This deal covers 8+8 aircraft, pilot training, and ammunition
  • Defensemirror.com bureau
  • 12:54 PM, February 24, 2024
  • 1266
Azerbaijan Signs $1.6B Deal with Pakistan to Buy JF-17 Jets, Weapons & Training

Azerbaijan and Pakistan have inked a $1.6 billion deal for the acquisition of JF-17 Block-III fighter jets, marking Pakistan's largest export deal.

This was first reported by Azernews.

Dr. Mehmood ul Hassan Khan stated, "It's widely circulated on social media, indicating the signing of a historic deal for JF-17 Thunder Block-III in both Pakistan and Azerbaijan."

Pakistani sources confirm the sale of 8 JF-17 Thunder Block-III fighter jets initially, with an option for Azerbaijan to buy an additional 8 jets later. The comprehensive deal covers aircraft, pilot training, and ammunition.

Dr. Mehmood ul Hassan Khan emphasized the JF-17 Block-III's advanced features, including the latest avionics and electronic warfare systems, and its capability to carry PL-10E short-range air-to-air missiles. Comparing it to the F-16C, he asserted its competitiveness against regional counterparts like Falcons, MIGs, and SUs.

The JF-17 Thunder, a collaborative effort between Pakistan Aeronautical Complex and China’s Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corp, features a Chinese airframe, Western avionics, and is powered by a Russian engine. The Block III variant enhances weapons capability, deploying various ordnance like air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles. Equipped with the PL-15 Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missile, it has a range of up to 300 kilometers.

To address engine issues faced by the older variant which led Myanmar to ground its fleet, the JF-17 Block III incorporates a new engine, possibly an enhanced derivative of the RD-33MK or the WS 10A. This upgrade improves performance and agility, allowing speeds exceeding Mach 2.

With active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, a helmet-mounted display (HMD), and potential inclusion of an internal infrared search and tracking (IRST) system, the Block III enhances situational awareness and target tracking, crucial for air combat scenarios.

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