Pakistan order T129 13 1005 OBKH 16Jan14 Jonathan Verschuuren 640No ATAK for Pakistan

The quest for an attack helicopter for the Pakistan Fauj (Pakistani Army) continues as the deal to obtain 30 Turkish manufactured T-129 ATAKs was cancelled.

Pakistan no longer thinks that Turkey can resolve the engine issue, with the LHTEC-T800 nor being allowed by the US government to be exported to Turkey. LHTEC stands for Light Helicopter Turbine Engine Company, a joint venture between Rolls-Royce and Honeywell. Hence the US say in this.

With the dozen AH-1Z Vipers also still stored awaiting payment, diplomatically called 'technical issues regarding the contract', the only solution seems to be the upgraded export version of the Chinese CAIC Z-10, the Z-10ME. As you may recall, the original Z-10 did not meet the stringent Pakistani hot-and-high requirements. The Chinese are adament that the new version meets all of these. We will have to wait and see how this progresses further.

Photo (just illustrative) by Jonathan Verschuuren (Scramble Archive)

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