Pakistan's navy chief likes China's military hardware

By Ai Yang (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-12-22 08:57
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The chief of Pakistan's naval staff Noman Bashir said he looks forward to see more cooperation in the submarine field between China and his country yesterday during a press interview in the Pakistani embassy in Beijing.

Pakistan's navy chief likes China's military hardware

The visiting navy chief already met with Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie in Beijing on Friday last week, according to Xinhua News Agency.

In addition to submarines, the admiral told China Daily yesterday that he has talked to Chinese officials buying bigger ships than the current F22P frigates.

Pakistan ordered the F22P frigates from China in 2005 and the first one began sea trials last year. According an earlier story on the website of the People's Daily, Pakistan ordered four more F22P frigates in 2007, which means there will eventually be eight such warships in the Pakistani Navy.

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"The F22P frigate is about 3,000 tons, and now we are talking about 4,000-ton ships. These are very big projects and we think the cooperation is important for both countries, especially Pakistan."

Bashir highly praised the Chinese military technology, saying he's happy to say that China is keeping pace with the changing world and efficiently adopting new technologies.

He said the warships are of the latest technology, and have the all-round capability to target surface ships, aircraft and submarine.

"The F22P frigate can be deployed to complete multitasks. The ship is balanced for offense and defense, and can be used in both peace and war time, if there is a war."

The first of the four F22P frigates ordered by Pakistan was delivered in July this year and is already in service.

The admiral stressed that this was his third visit to China this year because Pakistan attaches great importance to its cooperation with China not only on naval matters but in other fields.

Pakistan's navy chief likes China's military hardware

He said the F22P and JF-17 Thunder fighter plane are the two major projects in addition to other projects including development of ammunition, design, equipment and weapons.

The admiral said his country plans to buy more weapons from China in the future, such as bigger ships and missiles.

Zhai Dequan, deputy director of China Arms Control and Disarmament Association said that Pakistan's proposal in submarine cooperation is likely aimed at its sea border protection.

"The initiative may invite concerns from its neighboring countries. But the doubts are unnecessary." Zhai said it is normal for an independent country such as Pakistan to actively seek military defense, and meanwhile India also has large projects with the US and Russia. "India's aircraft carrier has already cost it billions of US dollars." He added.