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IDEX 2001 Folder: Pakistan's AWC seeks To Become a Global Player

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    IDEX 2001 Folder: Pakistan's AWC seeks To Become a Global Player

    One of the world's largest arms expo is underway in Abu Dhabi. More than 10 State and privately owned defence manufacturers are representing Pakistan. For more info:

    By: Paul Beaver

    Pakistan will acquire more combat aircraft from China, according to Air Chief Marshal Mustaf Ali Mir, the Chief of Air Staff. Last week, he described the aircraft on order as the F-7PG, based on the MiG-21 airframe.

    ACM Mir sees the F-7 as an interim solution. "A critical deficiency of high-tech aircraft in the air force structure remains to be redressed," he said last Wednesday during a speech to air force officer cadets.

    Further interim solutions include upgrading the current Dassault Mirage fleet. These airframes have been "upgraded to meet current technological requirements", he said. He added that Pakistan has acquired additional Mirage airframes "from various sources".

    Several years ago, Pakistan acquired the remaining Royal Australia Air Force Mirage III airframes, and other aircraft have been acquired, but the sources remain unconfirmed.

    "Pakistan's air force is now considering acquisition of high-tech weapons as soon as economic conditions (in the country) allow," said ACM Mir. He confirmed that the air force's Mirage and F-16 aircraft are also armed with a series of locally developed weapon systems from the Air Weapons Complex, one of Pakistan's exhibitors at IDEX 2001. AWC is showing the Mk80 general-purpose steel bomb, pre-fragmented GP and incendiary bombs, the ERB extended range bomb, the HAFR-1 runway denial weapon and fuzes.

    The ERB has a claimed stand-off range of 16-24km using a 122mm rocket motor. "This creates an extended-range weapon from the proven pre-fragmented bomb," said a spokesman, "and it can be carried on all NATO-standard suspension systems."

    Pakistan air ordnance is rarely seen outside the country and there is considerable interest in the HAFR-1 runway denial weapon. AWC claims it has good penetration capabilities and can be released at high speed while the attacking aircraft is flying at low altitude. The HAFR-1 decelerates to a very low speed to obtain the required penetration angle, which also allows the delivery aircraft to escape the blast. AWC can be found in Hall 9.

    [This message has been edited by outlaw (edited March 19, 2001).]

    From BBC.....

    By Julia Wheeler in the United Arab Emirates
    Pakistan is making a major sales drive at the Middle East's main defence exhibition, Idex, which is being held in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.

    Analysts say Pakistan has the largest presence they have seen at a defence show outside the country itself.

    In the Arab world, the underground nuclear explosions Pakistan carried out in May 1998 were lauded as the culmination of work towards an Islamic bomb.

    As a result there has been a feeling from some sectors that it should be a defence leader within the Muslim world.

    Now there are growing moves towards Islamic countries buying weapons from one another rather than from other countries - a similar idea to Nato members buying arms from within their own grouping.

    Cheaper weapons

    Saudi Arabia, the UAE and increasingly Jordan and Egypt are buying in to that idea.

    Arms, models and soldiers: All part of the exhibnition

    Pakistan's status as a nuclear power has added to its kudos in selling other arms.

    At the Idex exhibition, Pakistan is demonstrating weapons at cheaper prices than those available on other stands - a product of cheap labour.

    Analysts believe the quality is still high.

    In the mid-1990s Pakistani nine millimetre pistol ammunition passed the British Government's stringent tests and was bought by London.

    For sale this week are bombs, small arms, artillery and unmanned aircraft.

    Currently on Pakistan's client list are China, Bangladesh, Syria and some African countries.

    The Gulf states account for 17% of world arms purchases so inroads for Pakistan into this market could make a considerable difference to its defence industry.

    unity, faith, discipline
    Pakistan Zindabad