Bangladesh Army, Navy & Air Force has started historic steps to establish a defense industry sector in country to reduce foreign imports & save hard earned foreign currencies
Bangladesh has a little industrial base for defense equipment manufacturing and assembly. It comprises mostly land systems, small arms, and naval ships. An aviation center has been established but not going further than overhauling, maintenance and repair.
Bangladesh Ordnance Factories, Bangladesh Machine Tools Factories, Dockyard & Engineering Works Limited, Khulna Shipyard Limited, Chittagong Dry Dock Limited and Banghabandhu Aeronautical Center are the only entities in the defense sector.
Government of Bangladesh trying to expand this sector to create more jobs, saving hard earned foreign currencies and ultimately to enhance armed forces’ capabilities to maintain national security.
Bangladesh Army Requests Offerings of Technical Proposals from Interested Party for Its 105mm Self-Propelled Howitzer Gun Requirement
According to Directorate General Defense Purchase (DGDP) Bangladesh Army going to buy a large number of 105mm self-propelled howitzer cannon from any country who are manufacturing advanced high-tech SPH. Those SPH guns must be capable of firing any NATO standard rounds and should be equipped with ballistic protected crew cabin. DGDP is the purchasing authority of the Bangladesh Armed Forces.
Bangladesh Army will evaluate tracked, wheeled and truck-mounted systems to standardize the gun on country’s terrain and weather condition. How many SPH cannons will be procured it is not still clear, though the number would be large.
Under the “Forces Goal – 2030” Bangladesh Army emphasizes on mobility and fire power. Field artillery is the main firing potential of any army. Hence BA wants to build a handsome regiments of modern advanced self-propelled howitzer guns of various caliber.
Bangladesh Army buying Russian Mi-28 or Mi-35 Attack Helicopter for its Army Aviation Group (AAG)’s Anti-Armor Warfare. Bangladesh Army modernizing its forces’ power and acquiring most advanced modern weaponry & other military equipment such as C-295W aircraft, Mi-171Sh chopper, Nora B-52K SPG and now Mi-35/Mi-28 attack helicopter under the “Force Goal-2030” modernization program.
Bangladesh Army going to buy Russian Mi-28NM or Mi-35M attack helicopter soon.
Recently Russian Helicopters supplied 6 Mi-171Sh combat transport helicopters to Bangladesh ordered previously. Attack helicopters are the dedicated combat platforms used in the battlefield to provide fire support to the forward forces.
Bangladesh Army Aviation Group (AAG) building an independent air arm to execute its own air operations across the country and to reduce pressure on Bangladesh Air Force for fire support. Already BA has inducted various types of aircrafts including fixed-wing and rotary-wing. Previously they ordered Spanish made EADS CASA C295W medium lift military transport aircraft. Took delivery of 6 Mi-171Sh helicopters. Now ordering brand new dedicated attack choppers from Russia.
Before narrowing down the list Bangladesh Army (BA) has studied American AH-1Z Viper, Turkish TAI T129 ATAK and Chinese Z-10 attack helicopters.
Bangladesh has to protect herself from evil eyes on her peoples and resources. On the context of regional extremism uprising and insurgency in a low intensity it’s worthy to be prepared for any unexpected security scenario within or from external sources. Although, these security concerns Bangladesh must modernize its military with most advanced equipment available. Hence, government and armed forces prepared the “Forces Goal – 2030” modernizing program for the Bangladesh Army, Bangladesh Navy and Bangladesh Air Force. Under this program BA bought various weapons and equipment from various sources. Among them Nora B-52K1 SPG, BTR-80 APCs, MBT-2000 Tank, Multiple Launch Rocket Systems, Anti-Tank Guided Missiles, Mi-171Sh helicopters, FM-90B SHORAD, LY-80E Medium-Range Surface-to-Air Missile system, new assault rifle, Chinese Man Portable Air Defense System (MANADS) etc.
As Bangladesh got a large portion of its border surrounded by plain landscape and aggressor’s mechanized and armored infantry can penetrate through, hence a dedicated attack helicopter with handsome anti-armor firepower is a must needed thing to bolster the security. On the other hand these helicopters can be used in anti-insurgency and counterterrorism operations too. For this requirement Bangladesh Senabahini evaluated various platforms includes American Bell AH-1Z Viper, Turkish Aerospace Industries TAI T129 ATAK, Chinese Change WZ-10, and Russian Mi-35M & Mi-28NM. Among them army narrowed down the list to the Mi-35M & Mi-28NM.
As Bangladesh already operating a combat and transport helicopter like Mi171Sh it’s expected that they would buy Mi-28 attack chopper for the role. As still it’s not decided, we must wait to see what happen next!
Bangladesh Air Force F-7BGI Fighter Plane Armaments & Specifications/BAF Fighter Jets Update-2017
Bangladesh operating F-7BGI interceptor fighter jets in numbers. Chinese Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group built these single engine fighter aircrafts for Bangladesh with most advanced avionics and other sub-systems. Upgraded F-7BGI can carry and fire BVR & WVR air-to-air missiles, GPS/Laser guided bombs, Anti-Ship Missiles (AShM) and two types of rocket pods to fire unguided rockets. New engine has a wet thrust of 82kN. These fighter jets can carry 3000 kgs of weapons payload.
BAF has 32 F-BGI fighter jets operational, mainly deployed as interceptor role. F-7BGIs are the “stop gap” combat jets while Bangladesh Air Force sourcing 4++ generation fighters from Russian origin. In few months past DGDP issued a tender to acquire 8 4++ generation fighter jets with Russian specific technical data and finally Su-30SME has been selected. It was included in the tender that BAF will also bought additional four jets if the procurement goes smooth.
China has made thousands of Soviet designed Mig-21s under license as “J-7” for its own Air Force, and then upgraded the design with latest avionics, armaments, engine etc. Its export version is “F-7”. These fighter planes are the most advanced upgrades of its types, even from Mig-21 made by Soviet Union. Bangladesh Air Force seeking truly capable multirole combat jets in numbers to augment Air Forces air power to defend country’s sovereignty.
Under the “Forces Goal-2030” government funding most advanced defense equipment and setting up several institutions for BAF. Bangladeshi F-7BGIs are the currently world’s most advanced and even Mig-21 can’t compete it. It has a maritime capabilities as it can carry & fire C-704/C-802 Anti-Ship Cruise Missiles (AShM). Myanmar also has these jets but not in the same configuration that BAF deployed. Bangladesh Air Force increasing her air fire power steadily with advanced fighter jets, military transport aircraft, combat helicopters and high profile training for the airmen and pilots. F-7BGIs are the lethal string to our national defense. Our pilots are dedicated to make our night chaos free and our days safe to work. They’re well mated with their machines (F-7BGIs) that hostilities can be deterred effectively.
In near future Bangladesh will buy fifth generation stealth jets if economy goes well. BAF also establishing an “aero engineering and maintenance complex” to manufacture and overhaul own jets.