Despite rejection of the request to purchase new gen AIP submarines by the Senate’s Standing Committee on Defense Production, Pakistani Federal Cabinet has approved the project for joint development and co-production of new generation of submarines (SSK) with the China to counter the Indian purchase of diesel electric submarines, nuclear powered submarines, nuclear powered ballistic missile submarines and antisubmarine aircrafts by India.
Pakistan Navy had requested the joint development and production to fill the gap created due to the retirement of older submarines by Pakistan Navy.
In first phase Pakistan is looking to buy 6 submarines fitted with Air Independent Propulsion system but eventual requirement is for nine new generation submarines.
Due to urgency of the requirement Pakistan Navy will order first four submarines from Chinese shipyard and later two from the local shipyards.
This deal is will end the Pakistan Navy’s quest to buy new generation AIP submarines. Competitors for this deal included France with its new generation Marlin SSKs and Germany with its U-214 SSK along with China which offered Yuan class SSKs.
Pakisan Navy currently operates 3 Agosta 90B submarines which and 2 Agosta 70 submarines both of which are capable of using anti-ship cruise missiles.
Pakistan navy has also awarded the contract to the French DCN to upgrade the Pakistan Navy’s two Agosta 70 submarines with SUBTICS combat management systems to enhance their performance.