INAUGURATION OF FIRST BLK-52 F-16D AIRCRAFT
OF PAKISTAN AIR FORCE
Report : Directorate of Media Affairs, Pakistan Air Force
DALLAS - FORT WORTH, TEXAS USA 13 OCTOBER, 2009:- The first Block-52 F-16D aircraft of Pakistan Air force rolled out today, in a ceremony held at M/s Lockheed Martin Aeronautics (LM Aero) facility at Dallas - Fort Worth, Texas USA. Air Chief Marshal Rao Qamar Suleman, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force attended the ceremony as the Chief Guest.
Pakistan had signed a contract with US Govt in September 2006 for supply of 18 Block-52 F-16 C/D aircraft from M/s LM Aero. These state-of-the-art F-16s will bolster PAF’s fleet of high tech combat aircraft and will enable it to undertake wide variety of missions across the entire spectrum of operations.
After completion of testing and integration of the new system, the first batch of F-16 C/D aircraft is scheduled to arrive in Pakistan in June 2010, and the delivery of all 18 F-16s is planned to complete by December 2010.
Speaking on the occasion, ACM Rao Qamar Suleman said that this programme has seen many ups and downs since signing of the contract. The rollout of the first aircraft shows that the programme is on track.
Besides CAS PAF, the ceremony was also attended by Honorable Ms Kay Granger (Member US House of Representatives), Gen Norton Schwartz (Chief of Staff USAF), General David H Petraeus, Commander CENTCOM, HE Mr Hussain Haqqani (Ambassador of Pakistan), Mr Ralph Heath (President LM Aero), Mr John Larson (VP F-16/F-2/T-50 Programs) and other distinguished guests from the US Govt, LM Aero and the Government of Pakistan.