Bangladesh Buys Fighter Jets From China for $96.3M
By AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, DHAKA
Bangladesh has signed a $93.6 million deal with China to procure 16 fighter jets for its air force, the countryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s acting defense minister said Feb. 23.
Each fighter plane would cost 5.85 million dollars, Hafizuddin Ahmed, the countryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s water resources minister who is also acting minister of defense, told the national parliament, according to the state-run BSS news agency.
The minister did not indicate what kind of planes were being bought but Lieutenant-Colonel Nazrul Islam, spokesman for the countryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s armed forces, identified them as F-7 fighter jets.
Dhaka and Beijing have strong defense ties and much of Bangladeshi military hardware is purchased from China.
Last April, Chinese premier Wen Jiabao visited Dhaka as part of his maiden South Asian tour when the two countries signed a raft of agreements covering development, trade, economic and defense cooperation.
China is also BangladeshÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s biggest source of imported goods, this year surpassing India for the title for the first time since the country became independent in 1971.