MOSCOW: Russia has blocked the sale of Chinese fighter planes with Russian engines to Pakistan.
"We've denied China the right to supply its JF-17 fighter aircraft powered by Russian RD-93 engines to third countries, asking it to sign an end-user certificate for the engines," said Colonel-General Anatoly Mazurkevich, head of the Defence Ministry's International Cooperation Department.
President Pervez Musharraf said last year that the JF-17s would be flying in Pakistani skies by March 2007. Islamabad plans to acquire 150 JF-17s, known in China as FC-1. China has bought 100 Klimov RD-93 engines from Russia for installing on JF-17s, with an option to contract another 400 engines.
Speaking to Indian and Russian journalists ahead of a visit to India by Russia's Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov on January 22, Col.-Gen. Mazurkevich confirmed that India and Russia are shortly to sign accords to jointly develop and produce a 5th generation fighter plane and a multi-role transport aircraft.
India is expected to announce during Mr. Ivanov's visit its choice between two Russian concepts of a multi-role stealth fighter plane of the 5th generation that the Russian aviation majors, Sukhoi and MIG, presented to the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) last year.
The aircraft deals will be discussed when Mr. Ivanov co-chairs with Defence Minister A.K. Antony the 6th meeting of the Indo-Russian Inter-Governmental Commission for Military-Technical Cooperation. Ahead of the commission meeting on January 24 Mr. Ivanov will fly to Bangalore to visit the HAL and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), as well as some leading Information and Technology companies, and meet business people.