The Pakistani military has confirmed that it has withdrawn from a deal to supply Turkish helicopters due to delays in US sanctions against Turkey over its S-400s.
“It simply came to our notice then [T129] With Turkey, ”Pakistani military spokesman Lt. Gen. Babur Ibtihar told reporters last Wednesday.
Instead, Pakistan has begun negotiations with China over the purchase of Z-10ME helicopters.
The Pakistani military is in a hurry to replace 32 “Bell AH-1 Cobra” helicopters that have been in service for more than 30 years.
Where the deal stumbled
Pakistan is expected to buy 30 twin-engine T-129 ATAK helicopters.
However, due to the lack of machinery manufactured by LHTEC, a joint venture between the British company Rolls Royce and the US company Honeywell, the contract was “stuck” and Turkey was unable to manufacture them and deliver them to Pakistan.
The Donald Trump administration has refused to grant LHTEC approval.
Turkey tried to persuade Washington on the issue, but failed. In December 2020, Pakistan agreed to extend the delivery period of the helicopters, but now refuses to provide a new extension to Ankara and intends to purchase Z-10ME armored helicopters already made in China.
It is noteworthy that this agreement will be the largest export of Turkey’s defense sector.