Pakistan is set to import the JF-17 Thunder’s RD-93 engine directly from Russia in the near future. Earlier, the engines were purchased from China, which in turn resourced the RD-93 from Russia. According to sources in Pakistan, China has now issued a ‘no objection certificate’ that allows Pakistan to do business directly with Russia .
The new arrangement was already discussed between Russia and Pakistan late 2014, and smooths the way for Pakistan to lower production costs of its JF-17, which is produced by Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) in the city of Kamra, close to Islamabad.
The Klimov RD-93 is a variant of the RD-33 that powers the MiG-29 Fuclrum. The RD-93 is also fitted to the JC-1, the Chinese version of the JF-17 Thunder. The so-called stealthy Chinese J-31 prototype, which made its airshow debut last year, uses the same engine. Pakistan is named as an export customer for the J-31, while other countries are said to be interested in the JF-17.
In the past, Pakistan had to buy the engines from China as Moscow feared the JF-17 was competing in the international market with the MiG-29. With current Western economic sanctions against Russia over the situation in Ukraine, it is safe to say Russia seized this export opportunity to Pakistan.
© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest