Bangladesh is facing major trouble when the military hardware supplied to it by China was found faulty, facing “serious problems”.
There are numerous signs that the quality of Chinese military products is still lacking. Be it the problems with JF-17 which China is jointly producing with Pakistan or with the newly procured K-8W, reports EU Reporter.
Bangladesh Air Force had initially procured nine K-8W in 2014-15 and followed up with additional order of seven of these aircraft after the tragic loss of one K-8W near Jessore airport in July 2018.
Out of these fresh batches of seven K-8W’s, two had developed problems in the initial stages itself post their delivery in October 2020, reports the news portal.
Repeated requests to the Chinese National Aero Technology Import and Export Corporation (CATIC), elicited vague responses.
However, what is more, concerning is that there are also problems in firing the ammunition loaded on these aircraft.
The K-8W aircraft is a variant of the original Chinese Hongdu-8 which has undergone many transformations over a period of 30 years, the news portal said.
Not providing quality aircraft to the neighbours indicates either lack of genuine intent or capability or both.
The much-touted China- Pakistan joint venture of the JF-17 program is an example of the state of affairs of Chinese military hardware.
It is riddled with problems ranging from its RD-93 engine to problems of aircraft refuelling and the weapon systems, reports EU Reporter.
Bangladesh had procured the FM-90 (Chinese HQ-7A) system under a Chinese financial offer at a cost of RMB 3 million.
The system is important for BAF plans of setting up an Integrated Air Defence system. However, there are already defects in the system and BAF is now planning to procure additional spares and items.
This, in spite of the fact that the systems are hardly three years old, reports the news portal.
Bangladesh also sends several armed forces personnel to China for training in various PLA institutes.
However, there were reports of a batch of Bangladeshi Air Force officers who were undergoing training in the Aviation University of Changchun being mistreated by a Chinese senior officer, reports EU Reporter.
Problems from other Chinese supplied military equipment like the two Ming class submarines, which cost USD200 Million or the Chinese venture in the development of Pekua base are other examples of Bangladesh being at the receiving end of the somewhat dubious and aggressive Chinese military diplomacy.
The Bangladesh Government and the Navy are now burdened with the cost of repairs, import duties and various other issues, reports the EU Reporter news portal.