On 12 and 13 February, Pakistan’s Minister of Defence Production (MoDP) Rana Tanveer Hussain met with the Ambassadors of Turkey and the Netherlands along with Ukrainian defence industry officials.
In his meeting with Palvo Bukin, the Director General of the Ukrainian state-owned arms trading company Ukrspecexport and Alexander Khlan, the Director General of the Malyshev Factory, Hussain reiterated that Pakistan valued its ties with Ukraine (Associated Press of Pakistan).
The Malyshev Factory is to send an Oplot-M main battle tank (MBT) to Pakistan for trials, where it will be run against the VT4 MBT supplied by China’s NORINCO. Besides this, Heavy Industries Taxila (HIT) is also procuring 6TD-2 1,200 hp diesel engines from the Malyshev Factory for use on the al-Khalid MBT series.
On 12 February, Hussain met with Turkey’s Ambassador to Pakistan İhsan Mustafa Yurdakul. In addition to discussing the sale of 52 Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) Super Mushshak trainers to Turkey, he lauded Pakistan’s defence ties with Turkey.
In his official visit to Turkey in November 2017, Hussain told Turkey’s state-owned news agency Anadolu Agency that negotiations for the T129 attack helicopters and MILGEM corvettes were in the final stages. Pakistan is interested in procuring four MILGEM corvettes and 30 T129s.
Also on 12 February, Hussain met with the Dutch Ambassador to Pakistan, Ardi Stoios-Braken. According to a press statement from the MoDP, Hussain called for “establishing joint ventures related to the defence productions” involving the respective industries of the Netherlands and Pakistan.
Damen Shipyards and Thales Nederlands are leading Dutch suppliers, with Pakistan procuring solutions from both. In June 2017, the Pakistan Navy ordered two offshore patrol vessels (OPV) from Damen Shipyards, one of which is to be constructed at Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works.
Based on the specifications provided by the Pakistan Navy – i.e. a displacement of 1,900 tons, length of 90 m and maximum speed of 22 knots – the new OPVs could be a variant of the Damen OPV 1800. Pakistan plans to use the OPVs for “(sic) Anti Surface, Anti Air Operations, Maritime Security Operations, Day and Night Helicopter Operations, Combat Search and Rescue and Surveillance and Intelligence Gathering.”
Public export/import logs show the Pakistan Navy importing ‘radar equipment’ from Thales Nederland, it is unclear exactly what is being procured (with deliveries occurring as late as January 2018).
Import records of the Pakistan Navy showing deliveries from Thales Nederland:
Increasing bilateral cooperation would likely expand upon these transactions, which can involve additional OPV purchases (and/or cutters, auxiliary ships and other solutions) from Damen Shipyards. Likewise, the PN could consider including Thales Nederland as a prospective radar supplier for new surface combatants.