Pakistani weapons acquisition shows the country wants to become independent of United States for arms support. Pakistan’s armed forces have started to look towards Chinese suppliers for equipment specially during last two decades. Nevertheless, China has long supplied Pakistan’s armed forces with Pakistan making major purchases of top-of-the-line Chinese export equipment.
It worries India as Pakistan possess the military technology from China, Russia and US which makes a deadly combination. India govt and military has raised concerns on the Pakistan’s proximity towards China at multiple times. What is the most deadly military hardware that makes Indian army look jealous of two countries’ military relationship?
Here are some of the most powerful military equipment that Pakistan has acquired from China.
1. Nuclear Weapons Program
Pakistan smartly dodged US and international community to develop its nuclear weapons. The acquisition of nuclear weapons in the 1990s is considered to be one of the largest failings of the nuclear nonproliferation regime.
Nonetheless, Dr. A.Q. Khan played a significant role in its developed, yet, it is widely said that China provided significant assistance to the Pakistani nuclear weapons program. China is alleged to have provided missile components, warhead designs, and even highly-enriched uranium.
The political motive behind this is clear, Pakistan acts as an effective foil against growing Indian regional ambitions. But it is clear that nuclear assistance is the most deadly example of Chinese/Pakistani defense cooperation.
2. Taste the thunder: JF-17 Fighter
The JF-17 fighter is the new premier multirole fighter of the Pakistan Air Force, supplanting the position previously held by American F-16Cs.
It features a wide variety of air-to-air and air-to-ground munitions, including active radar air-to-air missiles and air-launched cruise missiles. The JF-17 despite being a “budget” aircraft brings a lot of modern capability and modern ergonomics for its cost.
The JF-17 could prove to be tough opponent, especially given the Indian aircraft like SU30s are said to have issues locking on at range with their first-generation R-77 missiles.
Not to mention, JF-17 like projects are joint ventures of the military production of two neighbors which triggered a response by the Indian establishment to build Rafael jets on its soil – a dream yet to come true.
3. Multiple Rocket Launcher, A-100 MRL
The A-100 is one of the latest MRL systems, reaching operational capability around 2,000. The first units were sold to Pakistan by China around 2008. Since then Pakistan has built facilities to indigenously produce rockets for the system. Multiple rocket launchers (MRLs) are some of the deadliest artillery systems on the battlefield. Combat experience in the Donbass has proven that MRLs can wipe out entire units if they remain static and unprepared.
Long-range MRLs are fielded by both India and Pakistan, with Indians fielding the Soviet/Russian BM-30 Smerch MRL. Rocket artillery could incur massive casualties in rear areas in the opening stages of a conventional conflict, as such both MRL systems are considered to be key parts of conventional deterrence strategies for India and Pakistan.
Read more: Jinnah-Class Frigate: Pakistan Navy’s JF-17
4. Al-Khalid Tank
The VT-1A, alternatively known as the Al-Khalid or MBT-2000 is one of the most capable tanks in the region. This was also a joint project between Pakistan and China and its design was practically clean slate. Production tanks have thermal gunner’s sights, a panoramic commander’s sight, and a 125mm gun.
Freshly produced Al Khalid 1 of #HIT.
In 2nd Pic, King of Jordan Abdullah II is seen shaking hands with Tank crew.
Probably this meet up took place on first week of Feb 2018 during King visit to Pakistan. pic.twitter.com/sh1YaVEYY5
— Tipu7 (@AhmAdTipu7) August 5, 2018
The VT-1A is very much capable of combating the T-72Ms that form the bulk of the Indian tank forces. Advanced T-90S tanks may pose issues to the VT-1A. However, Pakistan is considering acquiring the VT-4, China’s further development of the VT-1A design.
Pakistan Army was dependent on the Pakistan Air Force for air defense, however now the Pakistani military has acquired the Chinese HQ-16 medium-range surface to air missile (SAM). The infantry branch will use it for the defense of its formations on the ground. The HQ-16 utilizes vertical launch and containerized missiles to enhance reaction times. The weapon is a modernized version of the Russian Buk SAM system.
— dafeng cao (@dafengcao) August 19, 2016
PHQ-16 batteries are also said to be highly mobile, allowing them to avoid artillery and SEAD/DEAD (suppression of enemy air defence)/(destruction of enemy air defence) attacks. Pakistan is also in negotiations to buy the longer ranged Chinese HQ-9 system, a Chinese analog to the Russian S-300 long-range SAM.