ROLLOUT CEREMONY OF FIRST CHINESE ZDK-03 AWACS AIRCRAFT FOR PAF
China, 13 November 2010:
The Rollout Ceremony of first Chinese ZDK-03 AWACS aircraft for Pakistan Air Force was held at Hanzhong, China today. Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force was the Chief Guest on the occasion. The ceremony was attended by Commander PLA Air Force and other senior military and civil officials of China.
Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman in his speech described this occasion as another milestone in the exemplary history of cooperation between Pakistan and China. He appreciated the efforts put in by all members of the Chinese team and Pakistan Air Force personnel who remained involved in the development of the system and its timely rollout. During his speech, he also emphasized on the long and enduring relationship between Pakistan and China. He said this system will strengthen the capabilities of the Pakistan Air Force to maintain peace with honour in the region. He also added that system is part of the overall Pakistan Air Force strategy of transforming its self into a lean and technologically advanced Air Force. The Chief of the Air Staff also assured the nation that Pakistan Air Force would not spare any effort to make the defence of the country impregnable.
Chairman CETC Mr. Wang Zhigang in his speech said "China and Pakistan have formed a special all-weather strategic partnership. Our cooperation is based on time honoured brotherhood which is not going to fade with passing time. ZDK-03 project is a milestone in the bilateral collaboration on national defence technology. It has received special attention and all time support from Government and Armed Forces of both countries. It is the best symbol of joint efforts made by national defence researchers from both sides. I firmly believe the induction of Karakoram Eagle will be a positive impact on regional stability, peace and prosperity as well as, on the close bond between two military forces and two countries. ZDK-03 Project will be remembered and recorded in the history of China - Pakistan friendship, and it will be a new symbol of the all round strategic partnership of the two countries".
The ZDK-03 system is an advanced Airborne Warning and Control System with sophisticated integrated sensors and communications suite. Pakistan Air Force had signed a contract in 2008 with CETC of China for the joint development of 04 ZDK-03 AWACS aircraft configured to Pakistan Air Force specifications.