Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) has confirmed a deal to supply the Pakistan Army with 30 T129 ATAK attack helicopters. The deal had previously been reported on May 24, in a political manifesto from Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party, released ahead of the general election.
The company said that “ongoing negotiations between Pakistan Ministry of Defence Production (MoDP) and Turkish Aerospace have successfully been finalised”, and a contract has been signed. As well as the helicopters, the deal includes logistics, ammunition, spares, ground support equipment and training.
The twin-engine ATAK has already been tested by Pakistan Army in Turkey and Pakistan, to prove its efficiency in demanding environmental and geographical conditions. According to a statement from TAI, the twin-seat T129 “successfully passed all required tests in order to meet of the Pakistan Army needs”.
Under an ongoing programme to procure new attack helicopters, Pakistan evaluated the T129 in June 2016 and reportedly began contract negotiations for 30 in June last year. Earlier, its Army Aviation Corps ordered 12 AH-1Z Vipers and also conducted trials with three Changhe WZ-10s in 2015. The service also acquired four Mi-35Ms, apparently delivered earlier this year.