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China, Pakistan pledge to strengthen Air Force cooperation

PTI November 15, 2014 10:06 IST

Beijing: Pakistan's Air Chief today visited China's annual Zhuhai Air Show where the Chinese military displayed several of its new hardwares including the stealth fighter J-31 besides the Y-20 heavy military transport plane.

After participating in the inaugural ceremony of China's 10th Air show where Pakistan also displayed its fighter plane, JF-17 being jointly manufactured with China, Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt today held talks with Chinese Defence Minister Chang Wanquan.

The two discussed bilateral military ties, including cooperation between the countries' air forces, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Pakistan relies heavily on Chinese military ware and evinces keen interest in the new weapon systems being vigorously developed by China which is modernising its military at a rapid pace.

This year's air show attracted a lot of attention as the China has displayed its J-31 besides the Y-20 heavy military aircraft which the Chinese military wants to market abroad.

The Y-20, a wide bodied military transport aircraft is expected to enter military service soon.

Chinese officials said Y-20 is compared with the Russian-made IL-76 and the US C-17 which are present at the show.

They said the Y-20 is wider than the IL-476, a key feature for large military transport aircraft and claimed some of its technologies are more advanced than the IL-476.

Butt's visit followed signing of USD 46 billion worth of new agreements between the two countries during the visit of Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Shrif on Nov 8 here.

The agreements focussed mostly on building new energy and infrastructure projects in Pakistan.