Pakistan, China discuss new defence projects
The top Chinese and Pakistani defence officials have discussed new projects to expand their military cooperation as well as steps for timely completion of the ongoing projects, a media report said today.
Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee of the Pakistan Army Gen Khalid Shameem Wynne met Administrator of China's State Administration of Science Technology and Industry for National Defence Chen Qiufa and discussed various issues relating to defence cooperation including the ongoing and upcoming projects, Pakistan's APP news agency reported.
General Wynne, who is in China to take part in the eighth round of China-Pakistan security dialogue, yesterday thanked Chen Qiufa for his support in all defence projects and appreciated the active role of SASTIND in ensuring their timely completion, APP quoted a press statement as saying.
China, the major supplier of weapons systems to its "all weather friend" Pakistan is involved in a host of defence projects which included development of new fighter jet JF-17 Thunder which is being produced in both the countries with engines supplied by Russia.
China is also constructing a number of naval frigates for the Pakistan navy which so far took delivery of three Frigates and the fourth one is being constructed with Chinese cooperation in Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works.
During his visit here in September last, Pakistan Naval Chief Admiral Norman Bashir said that his country was interested in projects involving building bigger war ships and submarines.
It is not clear whether these proposals figured in talks between Wynne and Chinese defence officials.
The two countries also cooperated in developing Al-Khalid tanks for the Pakistan army.
Chen Bingde, Chief of General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army, (PLA) while welcoming Wynne said that the two countries pledged to enhance strategic communication and cooperation between their militaries.
China attaches great importance to its defence ties with Pakistan and is devoted to pushing forward relations between the two militaries, he said.
China is willing to work with Pakistan to develop the mechanism of defence and security talks, deepen strategic cooperation and contribute to the peace, stability and common development in the region and the world, state-run Xinhua quoted Chen as saying.
Wynne said the Pakistani army is willing to continue to strengthen friendly communication and cooperation with the Chinese army, and make more efforts to safeguard the two countries' development and security interests