BD Air Force started to modernize their existing eight Mig-29 fighter jets to the latest “SMT” variant. This modernization includes new multi-mode multifunctional fire control radar, better performance engine, other advanced avionics and latest weaponry with BVR air-to-air missiles.
Bangladesh Air Force has six single-seat & two twin-seat Mig-29s which were bought from Russia in 2000. Already these fighter jets of BAF has been overhauled two times. These are the most advanced fighter jets Bangladesh has in its advanced combat jet inventory.
On the other side, myanmar air force also proceeding to upgrade their 31 Mig-29s. Currently the relations between Bangladesh and myanmar disrupted severely over Rohingya genocide issues. Myanmar air force helicopters also violated Bangladesh’s airspace several times, though, Dhaka restrained from shooting them down.
As experts saying, if Bangladesh Air Force doesn’t briefly increase their advanced fighter jet number then the country’s airspace could face severe threats from regional hegemonic entity like india and myanmar. Recent news suggests that BAF has ordered 16 Chengdu J-10C fighter jets from China. Those advanced Chinese fighter jets will join BAF within years.
The price of the whole upgradation program hasn’t published but can be assumed it is not tiny. But it is for sure that true BVR capability will boost BAF’s air warfare power. Those fighter jets are currently assigned with the No. 8 Squadron which is based on the Kurmitola Air Base in Dhaka.
Reportedly, Bangladesh Air Force ordered one squadron of Chengdu J-10C fighter jets from China. As experts suggests, many observe that J-10C incorporated some stealth technology from the J-20 stealth fighter. BAF wants to replace their older F-7BG fleet with 4.5th generation fighters. Initially 16 aircrafts has been ordered, but in future whole fleet of 37 “BGI” will be replaced by this advanced J-10C fighter jets.
In midst of 2017 Bangladesh Air Force issued an international tender to purchase 8 (+40 Medium Range Combat Aircrafts, well known as the MRCA tender. Along with Russian Su-30SME, Mig-35 Chengdu J-10B was a participant. BAF selected Su-30SME as the primary winner, but later the deal has not been signed due high-price tagging from Moscow.
After that, RSK-Mig offered their Mig-35 multipurpose fighter jet to Bangladesh with some sort of transfer-of-technology. Meanwhile, BAF finalized a deal for 16 J-10C fighter jets from China. This “Chinese deal” was included in the $1 billion soft loan Beijing offered to Dhaka to buy china’s military aircraft for the Bangladesh Air Force.
So, that’s why many thinks that this J-10C procurement is different from the MRCA program. Some are calling it as the “MMRCA” program. Anyway, one squadron of the J-10C will greatly enhance BAF’s air power. Dhaka recently stepped in to reply myanmar for their brutal killings of Rohingya Muslims rakhaine state which is also known as the Arakan state.
On the other hand, BAF going to finalize a deal for another squadron of Mig-35 multirole fighters. Bangladesh’s law minister Anisul Haque, who’s also handling defense ministry too, told to the parliament that Bangladesh decided to buy two squadron of advanced 4.5th generation fighter jets. One squadron will be stationed at Dhaka Air Base and another one will be deployed at Cox’s Bazar Forward Air Base.
Surely, BAF will not spare a single opportunity to punish burma for her undeniable crime against humanity. Moreover, myanmar poked Bangladesh by violating the country’s airspaces several times. Assumed by point, very hard times for the myanmar armed forces are coming ahead.
Bangladesh Air Force conducted live air-to-air missile firing test recently to calibrate and augment air warfare capabilities. In this training Mig-29, F-7BGI and L-39ZA aircrafts participated. All the combat planes were from the Kurmitola Air Base. This training exercise was successful.
Earlier in 2017 Beijing offered $1 billion loan to Dhaka to buy military aircrafts from China, which was made under Bangladesh Air Force fighter aircraft procurement program. It includes Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group’s J-10C multirole fighter jets for BAF. This is the latest variant of the J-10, of which Chinese air force operating 250+ units and PLANAF has 24+ jets in active services.
Bangladeshi pilots are being trained in China to fly them. These J-10C fighter aircrafts will hugely boost Bangladesh Air Force’s operational capabilities to a new level. Gradually older combat jets will be phased out by these birds, mostly Chengdu built F-7 series aircrafts.
On the other side of the page, myanmar air force reportedly buying 6 Su-30MK from Russia. Bangladesh Air Force wanted to buy Su-30SME or Su-35. But Moscow tricked Dhaka with prices. And then offered their new development Mig-3 Fulcrum-F multipurpose fighter jet which has been claimed as 4++ generation fighter jet by the developer.
China offered their J-10B along with some other military planes, includes, an AEW&C aircraft, one Y-20 heavy military airlifter and one more squadron of K-8W Karakorum jet trainer aircrafts. Granted, BAF wants Russian Sukhoi series fighter jets more than Chinese ones, but this J-10C with most advanced AESA radar. This Chinese jet is powered by a single AL-31FN or WS-10A turbofan engine.
This is reported in various Chinese and international military aviation news outlets that Chengdu Aerospace Industry Group tests new PL-10 & long range PL-15 air-to-air missiles. China will also provide technology to manufacture some components of the J-10C in Bangladesh. Weaponry of the Bangladeshi J-10Cs will include anti-shipping/anti-surface warfare missiles, most of the precision guided weapons and long-range & shorter-range air-to-air missiles.
This latest version of the J-10 is really has some dangerous stings which made it lethal in air. For enemies like myanmar air force J-10C’s weapons load are enough to thwart their naval aggression in the Bay of Bengal. These jets also can intercept or carry out pre-emptive strikes on burmese military positions to stop further human rights violation by them.
So, ultimately procurement of the J-10Cs by the Bangladesh Air Force is a huge boost for the country’s air power. It was needed some couple of years ago, but now it’s not too late to have. Hope BAF will make the J-10C is the working horse, while Su-35/Mig-35 can be deployed as the high-end solutions.
Bangladesh Air Force will buy a squadron of Russian Mig-35 multirole fighter jets. Government of Bangladesh will finance the procurement. No loan will be taken to buy them. But, India offered a $500 million line-of-credit to Dhaka to purchase Mig-35, as many news outlet reported.
But it is skeptical why india wants to finance Bangladesh Air Force’s fighter aircraft purchase? As observers assumed, india wants to create technical influence over Bangladesh Armed Forces. India has some political and cultural in Bangladesh but it lacks such influence over the armed forces of the country.
From recent defense purchases of Dhaka irks india, especially, buying submarines from China. Previously india pressurized Bangladesh Government to accept indian proposal for a 25-year defense agreement and buy defense equipment from them. But, Bangladesh Army strongly rejected the idea.
After that Delhi found a new way to shackle Bangladesh’s defense modernization by pushing in their money into Bangladesh Armed Force’s equipment procurement which will create some strong leverage upon the deployment of those military articles alongside indian border.
But, from the mass people and military of the country has been rejecting the proposals. According to the indian authority, indian media reported several times that Bangladesh will use their money to buy the Mig-35 jets from Russia. These media reports don’t cite any official statement from the Bangladeshi side. Rather seeming it confirmed that BAF will pay the price of Mig-35 from india’s line-of-credit money, ridiculous.
Such unprofessional reporting created some hoax about it. Neither Government of Bangladesh nor Bangladesh Air Force said they’ll take indian money for buying defense equipment. So, until any official announcement from Bangladeshi authority it is a baseless news.
Bangladesh Air Force Fighter Jet Pilot Training.
Pilots fly a machine into the sky needs great skills. It demands brightest brains as well smart training. Bangladesh Air Force trains their fighter aircraft pilots with world class standard. There are helicopter and tactical transport aircrafts too in BAF to be flown. Hence they need sufficient quality pilots.
For the purpose Bangladesh Air Force recruit new general duty pilots every year and train them with modern, advanced technologies. Here, when a gentleman cadet enters into the BAF Academy they fly various types of trainer aircrafts. Those includes PT-6 basic trainer aircraft which are Chinese origin. And then trainee pilots goes to sky with intermediate jet trainers like K-8W Karakorum and L-39ZA. For more advanced jet training BAF train their flying students with most advanced Yak-130 fighter trainers.
After completing necessary initial flying training those new fighter pilots gets training on the FT-7 & Mig-29UBs, which are conversion-fighter trainer for the respective fighter jets. Thus Bangladesh Air Force trains the country’s air warriors.
Bangladesh Air Force started to setup manufacturing plant to produce rubberized & glass spare parts of Chinese origin military aircrafts at Bangladesh Aeronautical Complex.
A tender has been issued to the international parties to build a plant which will manufacture specific spare parts for the F-7BGI fighter jets, K-8W Karakorum and PT-6 trainer aircrafts. The building of the plant have to be completed within 2017-2018 fiscal year.
In long-term, Bangladesh Air Force has planned to manufacture advanced fighter jets, medium altitude long-endurance UAVs and avionics systems. In order to keep existing aircraft fleet, including fixed-wing & rotary wing, BAC will setup several overhauling plant.
An overhauling plant for the F-7BGIs being materialized and another one for the Russian built Mi-17 series of helicopters also been planned. These aviation industry facilities will boost Bangladesh’s defense equipment manufacturing capabilities to a greater extent.