ISLAMABAD 09 November, 2011:
Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force delivered a comprehensive presentation on Development and Service-entry of the JF-17 Aircraft into PAF at the 11th International Fighter Conference in the UK.
Addressing the conference as a key note speaker, the Air Chief said "PAF has come a long way from a small force in its formative years to a modern, war experienced and efficient Air Force. This progressive journey has resulted in the indigenous development of JF-17 Thunder aircraft. The JF-17 project is indeed a great achievement for the PAF and is an outright reflection of PAF's inbuilt strength; technological acumen and perseverance of its personnel who have made this dream come true. The programme underwent various challenges which were successfully overcome by our committed operational and technical teams. Resultantly, performance of the aircraft has far exceeded our expectations. In terms of gains, JF-17 project has provided cutting edge operational capabilities at an affordable cost. The Project worked under the direct supervision of Chiefs of the Air Staff, PAF. The success of the programme from conception to fruition is a tribute to successive Air Chiefs who nurtured it and made it a success."
The Air Chief further added, "Co-produced with our all-weather friend China, induction of JF-17 Thunder into PAF's combat fleet is indeed a land mark occasion which would go a long way in the history of PAF and Pak-China Strategic relations. The aircraft offers the best replacement for PAF's ageing fleet which is currently more than 75% of its inventory. In addition to providing affordable replacement of vintage fighter aircraft, the project is helping our national economy by providing job opportunities to a large number of civilian population through in-country production. Moreover, it has also introduced cutting edge technology in the country for use in numerous civilian fields. The number of JF-17 aircraft inducted corresponds to an enhancement in capabilities to meet PAF's operational requirements. This is in-line with PAF's new capability-based developmental strategy. The aircraft has also made its mark internationally by participating in Air Shows at Farnborough UK, Zhuhai China and Centennial Celebrations of the Turkish Air Force in Turkey. It will also participate in Dubai Air Show 2011 next week".