China to supply Pakistan with eight new attack submarines

Published: August 31, 2016


The Chinese government will supply eight modified diesel-electric attack submarines to Pakistan Navy by the year 2028.

The head of Pakistan’s next-generation submarine programme and senior naval officials briefed the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Defence on August 26 regarding the new development.

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The high-level statement in front of the committee members provides official confirmation, indicating that the programme is moving ahead, although it is unclear whether a contract has been signed. In April, a senior Pakistan Navy official announced that Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works (KSEW) had secured a contract to produce four of the eight submarines, which will be fitted with air-independent propulsion (AIP) systems.

The defence deal is valued at $4 to $5 billion and China is expected to extend a long term loan to Pakistan at a low interest rate. It has not officially been confirmed what type of submarines will be supplied to the Pakistan Navy by the China Shipbuilding Trading Company (CSTC) and there has been considerable speculation on the subject in the past.

Analysts speculate that the new submarines will be lighter export versions of the People Liberation Army Navy (PLAN)’s Type 039 and Type 041 Yuan-class conventional attack submarines.

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The first four submarines are expected to be delivered by the end of 2023 while the remaining four will be assembled in Karachi by 2028. These are expected to form the the sea-based arm of Pakistan’s burgeoning nuclear second-strike triad.


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Reader Comments (40)

  • ghazal
    Aug 31, 2016 - 12:07PM

    pl make sure they are nuclear submarines,IMF will pay for that …………other wise they will be like used and disused coal plants being sold under CPEC ( soft loans )or JF-17 which china itself has never used or will ever useRecommend

  • Truth Seeker
    Aug 31, 2016 - 12:41PM

    Just in another News i saw how 75% of GDP is used for servicing Debt, which obviously terms Pakistan to be a “DEBT” Nation, Greece failed when it reach 82% range. EU Saved Greece. But its ironic with the misplaced priority country liek paksitan is going to shambles yet Military expenditure is non-compromised!All the best!!Recommend

  • shafi
    Aug 31, 2016 - 12:46PM

    @ghazal,i agree with u but who will listen?, i am afraid it might turn into another Augusta B SUBMARINE scandle. only result into loss of nation money and filling pockets of establishmentRecommend

  • Malik
    Aug 31, 2016 - 1:16PM

    I cannot understand how these will create a nuclear second strike triad because these are attack submarines not a Ballistic missile submarines.Moreover in this day and age of Nuclear submarines conventional diesel-electric submarines are only used for defending home waters(because of the depth and stealth that nuclear subs can achieve is way more) not for blue water services.The most important fact is current debt of Pakistan is 67 billion USD(more than 30% of gdp) added further debt on defence will not yield any profits.The best way to work towards development.Because the day news about bad debt becomes viral panic will cause further downfall leading to collapse.Recommend

  • Hmm
    Aug 31, 2016 - 1:47PM

    Good…Pakistan should buy these as soon as possible . In stead Pak should by 50 submarines.Recommend

  • abood
    Aug 31, 2016 - 2:27PM

    Waste of money.who will we attack.india.whats the point and than indians will attack us and we will kill each other.well the poor on both side of the borders will die and the rich will be saved.what do we get from buying more ammunition .lets not waste money on it.why spend to kill.Recommend

  • Raw is War
    Aug 31, 2016 - 2:29PM


    your figures of 67 Billion USD debt is wrong. Actually it is 215 Billion USD. This is equalant to the whole GDP of Pakistan- that too nominal GDP.It means you need to sell the whole nation to cover the debts.Recommend

  • hari
    Aug 31, 2016 - 3:00PM

    Pakistan should purchase carrier groups and nuclear subs too. Cheers.Recommend

  • Mayor
    Aug 31, 2016 - 3:04PM

    * The defence deal is valued at $4 to $5 billion and China is expected to extend a long term loan to Pakistan at a low interest rate *

    haha and you thought Americans are bad for funding your military free of cost. Nothing is free from China, not even your T-shirt. Recommend

  • Concerned Balochi
    Aug 31, 2016 - 3:43PM

    @ Raw is war…China may be interested to buy only Balochistan…How will Pakistan pay rest of the debts…I am really concerned??Recommend

  • Haramullah
    Aug 31, 2016 - 4:40PM

    Congratulation China, for the great deal.Recommend

  • BrainBro
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:06PM

    I have a feeling China might recover this debt by buying out Baluchistan and turning it into an “independent territory.”Recommend

  • Mayor
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:21PM

    @Raw is war How is Pakistan debt $215 billion? Recommend

  • M. Emad
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:28PM

    Pakistan Navy’s first diesel-electric attack submarine was PNS Ghazi (1963 – 1971).Recommend

  • Zen
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:33PM

    To compete with India, it needs nuclear submarines. China supplies 2nd. class submarines to keep their factories running. Generals are happy to spend national wealth to support China.Recommend

  • wow ahmed
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:36PM


    He is quoting internal and external debt combined,hence $215 billion.Recommend

  • Tyggar
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:40PM

    Why isn’t China giving these to Pakistan at 1/3rd price like the US offer for F16. All Pakistanis were cursing US for demanding full payment for the F16sRecommend

  • ali
    Aug 31, 2016 - 5:41PM

    Pak Cheen dosti zindabad.Recommend

  • vinsin
    Aug 31, 2016 - 6:56PM

    How low is the low interest rate? Who would be assembler of these submarines, Pakistani or Chinese? Considering Pakistani economy and high debt, she spend quite a much on military and now a loan for buying submarines. Do Pakistan need so many of them for defensive purpose considering that these will make both India and Pakistan have equal no of non-nuclear submarines?Recommend

  • Abner Cherian
    Aug 31, 2016 - 7:37PM

    “duplicate” small subs which will wake up sea creatures !Recommend

  • Buzzkill
    Aug 31, 2016 - 7:48PM

    Pakistan is being sold in bits & peices at very cheap rates to China. China will soon control everything in Pakistan. Pakistanis need to start learning Chinese urgently.Recommend

  • Titan
    Aug 31, 2016 - 7:58PM

    India should just buy out whole Pakistan for $100 billion. I think that’s a fair price.Recommend

  • Jawad
    Aug 31, 2016 - 8:21PM

    Will these subs work like other Chinese products. Recommend

  • cuban
    Aug 31, 2016 - 8:30PM

    Attack submarines have to be close to the bottom of the list in practical value to Pakistan military – it’s likely some people are getting big payoffs for this multi Billion deal. Recommend

  • PrasadDeccani
    Aug 31, 2016 - 8:37PM


    Don’t you say that again. India is very fortunate that British India has split into three countries.Recommend

  • Korn
    Aug 31, 2016 - 8:51PM

    Pakistan has become China’s junkyard. All of China’s obsolete junk like coal plants, ships, weapons, aircraft etc are dumped in Pakistan & Pakistan pays high interest to the Chinese to buy this junk. China is indulging in daylight robbery of Pakistan.Recommend

  • IndianDude
    Aug 31, 2016 - 8:57PM

    ..China to supply Pakistan with eight new attack submarines..

    This is really good news for Pakistani awam! As unlike F-16s and tanks, the pakistani armed forces won’t be able to use submarines to attack, kill and defeat pakistanis as being done in NWFP, FATA and balochistan.!Recommend

  • cuban
    Aug 31, 2016 - 9:11PM

    @Titan: India should just buy out whole Pakistan for $100 billion. I think that’s a fair price.
    If your going to spend money why not spend it in Kashmir? If India spend as much money on Kashmir people as it does on the 300,000+ troops it has to maintain 24/7 maybe the Kashmir people would appreciate India and you could finally allow a “vote” on whether they want to acknowledge their alliance with India?Recommend

  • Kulbhushan Yadav
    Aug 31, 2016 - 9:28PM

    It could be a good deal if it comes without population otherwise nope.Recommend

  • Amir Ali
    Aug 31, 2016 - 9:34PM

    Helo sir Assalam alikumRecommend

  • Titan
    Aug 31, 2016 - 9:57PM

    @PrasadDeccani: Population will be shipped to iron brother China to work in chinese sweat shops.Recommend

  • abood
    Aug 31, 2016 - 10:54PM

    @titan.our you can buy toilets for indians with these 100 billion dollars.or the second option is to get every women in your country a guard with these 100 billion dollars so they may be saved from the rapists on your street.thats like saving from 90%of men on the streets.Recommend

  • Srinivasulu Mekala
    Aug 31, 2016 - 10:57PM

    From India’s point of view, it is a good news. Pakistan will be burdened with an additional debt of $5b. These toys will come not before 2023, that is a very long time from now. But where will Pakistan dock them; because by then Karachi and Gwadar would probably have changed hands!!! May be they will bring them on road through CPEC and lodge in a museum at Rawalpindi!! History is taking very fast turns in the Indian subcontinent. Anything can happen at an extremely short notice!Recommend

  • Sandip
    Aug 31, 2016 - 11:04PM

    @Titan: What? $100 bn for a load of rubbish? No way!Recommend

  • Sandip
    Aug 31, 2016 - 11:05PM

    @cuban: Forget the vote, we are just going to take the rest of it – when we want to.Recommend

  • cuban
    Sep 1, 2016 - 1:31AM

    @Sandip: @cuban: Forget the vote, we are just going to take the rest of it – when we want to.
    And what’s the upside in that? Maybe India should provide toilets/education and remove it’s 3rd World status before trying to assimilate a nation which the majority of people seem to dislike India? Recommend

  • Mahakaalchakra
    Sep 1, 2016 - 2:48AM

    Here goes the income, if any, generated by CPEC (Chinese Power Extention Chord) splitting Pakistan in to Two unequal halves for ever to connect their colony called Gwaghoder.Recommend

  • komal s
    Sep 1, 2016 - 6:48AM

    Why would you buy a headache?Recommend

  • optimist
    Sep 1, 2016 - 11:21AM

    Only eight submarines? That too diesel ones? They are useless and obsolete.

    We need to buy at least 20 big nuclear submarines that are capable of launching nuclear missiles at India while staying submerged and undetectable for very long periods.Recommend

  • Hafiz Saeed
    Sep 1, 2016 - 12:28PM

    Well done Pakistan. Insha Allah we will soon defeat India and take back Kashmir.Recommend

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