In the lead-up to the International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS), which will begin in Karachi on 22 November, Quwa will overview some of the scheduled events.
Several high-profile agreements will be signed at the International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS) – including a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Turkish Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC).
The MoU – or at least one aspect of it – will likely cover the PAC Super Mushshak. In 2013, PAC submitted the Super Mushshak as its bid for the Turkish Air Force’s requirement for 52 basic trainers. In July, Pakistan’s Ministry of Defence Production (MoDP) announced that it had won the tender and it was in the process of finalizing the sale to Turkey, which would also be PAC’s single largest export order.
Aside from the Super Mushshak, there may be additional areas of collaboration between the Turkish MoD and PAC. Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) had previously contracted parts manufacturing work to PAC as part of the Anka medium-altitude long-endurance drone program.
It is possible that the Turkish MoD could expand upon this work by pushing additional work to PAC. In fact, TAI has commercial interests in Pakistan in terms of the Anka drone, T-129 attack helicopter, upgrading F-16s, and the Hürkuş trainer – Turkey can leverage commercial offsets (which can support the Turkish MoD) and partial transfer-of-technology.
One might also raise the prospect of the TAI TFX, the Turkey’s next-generation fighter program. However, that program is still in the conceptualization phase: The engine has not been finalized, and the design consulting and support deal with BAE Systems has yet to be inked. Thus, it would be premature to assume that there are substantive technical TFX talks between Turkey and Pakistan, though IDEAS may provide an opportunity to discuss the subject at a high level.
It is important to note that the MoU (regardless of whether it involves one program or multiple projects) is between the Turkish MoD and PAC specifically. It seems to be industry related in its nature, which means a deal with PAC does not necessarily mean it is a deal with the Pakistan Army, Navy, or Air Force and their respective armament requirements. Granted, Turkey could view (and it does) view industry relationships as a central means to make in-roads into the Pakistani defence market.