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Pak, China finalise $600 million defence deal

The deal includes construction of four F22P frigates for the navy and transfer of technology for indigenous production of modern surface fleet.

india Updated: May 23, 2006 17:53 IST

Pakistan has clinched a USD 600-million defence deal with China, which includes construction of four F22P frigates for the Pakistani Navy, upgradation of the Karachi dockyard and transfer of technology for indigenous production of modern surface fleet.

The deal has been finalised and the keel for construction of the F-22P frigates would be laid at the Hudong-Zhonghua Shipyard in Shanghai this year, Chief of Pakistan Navy, Admiral Muhammad Afzal Tahir, who concluded a week-long visit China on Monday, said.

Under the deal, three frigates would be built in Shanghai and the fourth one would be constructed at Karachi dockyard, which would also be upgraded to enable Pakistan to build its own fleet of frigates later.

Tahir said the first frigate would be delivered to Pakistan in 2008 and the other three by 2013 along with transfer of technology.

The frigates would be equipped with organic helicopters specially designed for surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles along with numerous associated self-defence systems, he said, adding that the "modalities of design and configuration are at the final stages."

The four Chinese Frigates would be in addition to the four Pakistan Navy would be buying from Greece.

The deal to buy four naval vessels from Greece was struck during the just concluded visit of Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz to Athens.

The frigate deal with China follow the two sides' decision to jointly develop JF-Thunder fighter, which they plan to begin shortly. Also Pakistan Air Force plans to buy new Chinese made J-10 fighters in big numbers.

First Published: May 23, 2006 17:53 IST