According to many Pakistani and Sri Lankan media reports, Pakistan closed the sale of eight units of the JF-17 Thunder fighter jet to Sri Lanka yesterday. This marks the second finalized international sale for Pakistan, the first supposedly being Myanmar though confirmation is awaited from the Pakistan Air Force.
Pakistan will sell eight combat JF-17 Thunder aircraft to Sri Lanka under an agreement signed during Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to the country on Tuesday. The Sri Lankan media reported on Tuesday that their country’s leadership had rejected Indian pressure not to buy JF-17 Thunder fighter jets from Pakistan.Sri Lanka will be the first country to purchase JF-17s from Pakistan. Authorities say the order will be ready by the end of 2017.
Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC), the main facility for the the fighter’s production, is not a stranger to selling aircraft. It has prior experience of manufacurting and selling the MFI-17 Mushshak and Super Mushshak trainer aircraft. However, the new multi-million dollar fighter aircraft sale is a new and much more complex domain Pakistan has entered into.
Based on the reports so far, it appears the present sale of eight aircraft is an initial order. It is very much possible that the SLAF will purchase more JF-17s in the years to come.