Argentina JF17 Aviacion Argentina Julio Gutrievez 640China pitching JF-17 to Argentina again

During the first week of May 2021, a delegation from China visited Argentina to pitch the JF-17 Thunder to the Fuerza Aérea Argentina (FAA, Argentinian Air Force).

The officials from CATIC (China National Aero-Technology Import & Export Corporation), part of the umbrella company AVIC (Aviation Industries Corporation of China Ltd) are offering twelve such aircraft to Argentina. The deal comprises ten single seat and two dual seat aircraft. Possibly these, or a follow-on order, will be partly assembled locally by the Fabrica Argentina de Aviones 'Brig. San Martin' (FAdeA). Talks to buy twenty Thunders were held in 2015 as well, without success.

The last Argentinian effort to obtain a new fighter was in 2020, when the Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) FA-50 was offered. This deal fell through, because the United Kingdom blocked the deal as the FA-50 contained British parts. As a result of this anti-Argentinian policy, the Chinese will probably be forced to supply the JF-17 with domestic ejection seats. Whereas the Pakistan Air Force for example, has opted for the Martin-Baker PK16LE.

Anyway, as with the many previous attempts, the financial conditions may even be a bigger deal breaker.

Image by Julio Gutiérrez via Aviacion Argentina

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