On the second day of the 2017 International Defence Industry Fair (IDEF), which is taking place in Istanbul, the Turkish Undersecretary for Defence Industries (SSM) awarded a contract of 52 Super Mushshak trainers to Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC).
This was one of three contracts signed by Turkey and Pakistan at IDEF, with the others being a letter-of-intent (LoI) for the sale of four MILGEM corvettes for the Pakistan Navy and a LoI for fresh collaboration between PAC and Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI).
This is PAC’s largest single order for Super Mushshak since the aircraft’s introduction in 2002. In fact, 2016 was an eventful year for the Super Mushshak, with orders of eight and ten aircraft to the Qatar Emiri Air Force and Nigerian Air Force, respectively.
The SSM finalized the agreement during Pakistan’s biennial defence exhibition IDEAS in November 2016. The Turkish Air Force (TuAF) selected the Super Mushshak to replace its legacy screening trainer aircraft, notably the SF-260. Pakistan’s Ministry of Defence Production (MoDP) announced that PAC was selected to fulfill the TuAF requirement in July 2016.
The Super Mushshak is an upgraded variant of the Saab MFI-17 Supporter, which Pakistan began ordering in 1974. Pakistan procured 92 MFI-17s in the form of semi and complete knock-down kits (SKD and CKD).
In 1982, the original manufacturer – Malmö Flygindustri – stopped producing and supporting the MFI-17. PAC began manufacturing the MFI-17 under license as the Mushshak in 1983 – it had produced a total of 188 aircraft by 1995. In 2002, PAC introduced the Super Mushshak, which introduced many improvements to the Mushshak including a digital glass cockpit and the Lycoming IO 540-V4A5 260 hp engine.