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IDEAS 2018: Is Pakistan Prioritizing New Munitions Development? (Part 2)

During the 2018 International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS), Pakistan and UkrOboronProm of Ukraine agreed to collaborate on the development of “high-precision missiles of various classes.”

In a press statement, UkrOboronProm stated that both sides confirmed intentions to “start joint research and development in the coming months” – implying that the agreement was more than a memorandum-of-understanding (MoU), but a concrete program coming into effect soon.

Likewise, there are reports of Turkey’s Roketsan A.S. ‘assisting’ Pakistan with “air-to-air, air-to-ground and anti-tank … missile technology.” However, an official press statement regarding this has yet to be found.

In part-one, Quwa discussed why Pakistan is looking to pursue joint munitions development. Reasons for the move include integrating to platforms of choice, guaranteeing supplies, and accessing technology. In part-two, Quwa will discuss how Pakistan could achieve its aims, i.e., its likeliest development partners.

China: Pakistan’s Munition Development Partner

Quwa will explore the impact Ukraine and Turkey could have in part-three (to be published on Friday, 25 January 2019). However, part-two will continue by examining China, which – while not necessarily there to co-develop final applications with Pakistan – is helping Pakistan build the capacity for development.

While this is not a surprising notion, it is worth noting that it was China that helped Pakistan initiate its potential for munitions development work. In February 2018, Pakistan announced that it set-up an instrumented weapons test range (WTR) at the Sonmiani Firing Range with China’s assistance.

While the Sonmiani WTR is expected to drive Pakistan’s strategic weapons development, the showcasing event involved a JF-17 test-firing SD-10 and PL-5EII air-to-air missiles (AAM). Thus, the new WTR is actually capable of tracking more than just ballistic and cruise missiles, but small, high-speed munitions too.

China is also among that select cadre of states with mastery of every input involved in producing modern guided munitions — i.e., the propulsion, guidance, flight control system, etc – and it can scale, significantly…

End of Excerpt.

Part-One | Part-Three

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