October 3, 2023

Air Chief holds key meetings during China visit

ISLAMABAD_ Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Zaheer Ahmed Baber Sidhu called on various dignitaries during his visit to China.

In these meetings, the Air Chief called on Chinese Defence Minister and State Councilor General Li Shangfu, People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) Commander General Chang Dingqiu, Chief of Equipment Development Department General Xu Xueqiang and Director General Bureau of Military Equipment and Technical Cooperation (Bometec) Major General Fan Jianjun, a Pakistan Air Force (PAF) news release said.

During the meetings matters pertaining to mutual interest and regional security situation were discussed.

The dignitaries also discussed the evolving geo-political environment and regional developments having significant implications for both countries.

During this historical engagement between the highest level military leadership of the two nations, the Chief of the Air Staff said that Pakistan values its strong diplomatic and defence ties with China which are based on convergence on all important issues related to regional peace and security while reiterating strong strategic partnership in the face of shared challenges.

A smartly turned-out contingent presented a guard of honour to the Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force on his arrival at the PLAAF Headquarters, in Beijing, China.

The PLAAF Commander expressed his admiration for the professionalism of the Pakistan Air Force personnel and praised the remarkable progress made by the Pakistan Air Force through indigenization.

The Air Chief reiterated his unwavering commitment to enhancing the existing bilateral ties in military-to-military cooperation, strategic alliance and the training domain.

Later, during two separate meetings between the Air Chief and General Xu Xueqiang, Chief of the Equipment Development Department, and Major General Fan Jianjun, Director General Bureau of Military Equipment & Technical Cooperation (Bometec), several key points on exploring opportunities for technology transfer and collaborative development of advanced military hardware were also discussed.

The Chief of the Air Staff also met the Industrial heads of the Chinese Defence Industry.

The meetings were focused on defence acquisitions and technology collaboration between the two sides.

Highlighting the significance of the longstanding partnership between the two countries, the Air Chief said that PAF leadership wishes to further deepen the existing aviation cooperation and exchanges with China in the fields of human resources and technology so as to jointly address shared security challenges.

The visit of the Chief of the Air Staff to China is a testament to the strong commitment of both nations to further enhance their strategic partnership through continued dialogue and military collaboration.