National Security Committee (NSC) has approved, in principle, a project to acquire as many as eight Chinese submarines. Rear Admiral Mukhtar Khan informed National Assembly's Defence Committee that eight Chinese submarines would be purchased from Chinese companies. He said financial negotiations for the purchase of these submarines are in an advance stage between Naval Headquarters and the federal government.
He said submarines produced by Western countries are costly and Chinese submarines fulfil all the Pakistan Navy's requirements. A team of experts also visited China and is satisfied with the capability of Chinese submarines.
Responding to a question, he said that a French company is providing submarines to India but Pakistan's deal with that company could not materialise due to non availability of transfer of technology and recurrent cost of French submarines. Russia has also defence ties with India and recently it gave to India two nuclear submarines on loan.
He said Pakistan and Russia have started negotiations on procurement of equipment but no talks have been initiated for procurement of Russian submarines.
He further said that Pakistan Navy's requirement of special funds ($294 million) to upgrade/ induct ATRs has been approved by Ministry of Defence in consultation with Finance Division. A summary has been submitted for approval of NSC.
Shaikh Rohale Asghar chaired the meeting of the committee.