China's Selling the J-31, But Who's Buying?

Discussion in 'China' started by sorcerer, Nov 14, 2014.

  1. sorcerer

    sorcerer Senior Member Senior Member

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    Is anyone interested in purchasing China’s answer to the F-35?

    By Robert Farley November 14, 2014

    Who’s going to buy the J-31?

    The recent appearance of the aircraft at the Zhuhai airshow, as well as the comments of a smattering of Chinese officials, led to a spate of articles suggesting that China was interested in the J-31 primarily as an export model. Conceivably, the J-31 could occupy a low-end stealth fighter niche that currently has no other entrants.

    Some have billed the J-31 as China’s answer to the F-35, as if that represented some sort of compliment. It’s hardly a stretch to suggest Pakistan would be a major customer, and perhaps Egypt as well. Beyond that? The United States can offer the F-35 to a wide range of European and Asian countries, all of which have strong economies, big defense budgets, an appetite for high tech, and an interest in cementing the long-term technological and political relationship with the United States.

    Beijing doesn’t have the kind of friends that would do it the favor of buying something like the F-35. If the sanctions on Iran ease up in the wake of a successful nuclear deal, Tehran will be looking to buy advanced fighters. If the Assad government ever manages to win its civil war, it too will need new fighters, but probably won’t be able to afford anything like the J-31. The Gulf monarchies buy weapons in order to create political ties, and are unlikely to shift their attention from Washington to Beijing unless the international system changes in immense and unforeseen ways.

    Malaysia and Indonesia have been known to make adventurous decisions with respect to fighter purchases, but given the tensions in the South China Seas, it’s unlikely that China would want to significantly increase their capabilities, or that they’d want to tie themselves to Chinese support. Several Latin American countries may soon recapitalize their air forces, but the Europeans seem to have a leg up in that market, and thus far the Latin Americans seem satisfied with reliable generation 4.5 fighters.

    Russia and India, of course, are right out.

    At this point, no one has a good sense of how much the J-31 might cost, or how the Chinese might try to package it. If the J-31 resembles the F-35 in anything but superficial terms, the system add-ons will matter as much as the airframe itself. The F-35, after all, sells itself as the center of a system of sensor and communications systems that facilitates air command. This system requires a variety of other components (drones, EW aircraft, satellites), and the system is enhanced by the capacity of F-35s to work together to create a more accurate vision of the battlespace.

    There’s no indication as of yet that the J-31 is supposed to have these kinds of emergent capabilities, and there’s little sense that China is capable of developing and exporting such systems along with the airframe. America’s friends buy the F-35 because they worry that their legacy aircraft won’t be able to coordinate effectively with U.S. planes in multilateral combat situations. China doesn’t have this kind of relationship with anyone, and consequently can’t make one of the biggest cases for buying a fifth generation fighter.

    Competing with the F-35 requires more than developing an effective airframe. The F-35 remains attractive not because it’s awesome, but because it’s embedded in a larger set of political and technological relationships. China has a lot of work to do before it can compete with that.

    @Ray, @pmaitra, @Kunal Biswas, @Bhadra, @ladder , @ all others
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 10, 2015
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  3. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    Pakistan and Venezuela could be potential customers.
     
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  4. ladder

    ladder Senior Member Senior Member

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    Aren't we counting chickens before they hatch? Let the program mature first, before listing the customers.
     
  5. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    Nicely written article. The last paragraph explains why the F-35 is viable.

    J-31 is also going to use the Guizhou WS-13 turbines, that are far better than, and slated to replace, the Klimov RD-93, and shows the level of sophistication PRC has achieved in its turbine programme.

    J-31 has the potential of becoming PLAAF and PLANs mainstay in medium combat fleet. F-35 has already become a money sink-hole that is plagued by the quality of being able to do a mediocre job of a lot of things, and not being able to do anything well.

    Who will buy J-31? Anyone, who does not need a networked and well-integrated "system," or a "Joint Strike" concept to operate an aircraft. Who will buy F-35? Those that are already part of the "system."

    If technology leap is what we want to look at, this is good show by PRC.

    If selling weapons is what we want to look at, J-31 will probably see limited use outside PRC, and PRC is better off developing a cheaper model with fewer bells and whistles, to make it attractive to a few potential buyers.
     
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  6. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Pakistan Air Force would do well to have some gifted by China.
     
  7. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

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    PAF, They operate JF-17 and J-31 has same engines and probably same avionics suit ..
     
  8. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    PAF is interested in purchasing upto 40 J-31's from China as reported by Janes. There's a lot of speculation about the capabilities but the fact remains that little is known except for those involved in the development.
    Afaik it's a magnificant platform par with the overpeiced and delayed F-35.
    PAF hopes to induct it as early as 2018/19.
     
  9. ladder

    ladder Senior Member Senior Member

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    Surprised that there is no joint development but outright purchase.
     
  10. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    There is no need for a JV for 2-3 squadrons but PAF has ditached about 40 engineers to monitor the program since 2010.
    Pakistan doesn't have the required industrial infrastructure to absorb this kind of aircraft yet.
     
  11. sorcerer

    sorcerer Senior Member Senior Member

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    A few criticism about J-31

    [​IMG]

    Chinese Stealth Fighter Takes Off Under Obama's Nose
     
  12. Ashutosh Lokhande

    Ashutosh Lokhande Senior Member Senior Member

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    maybe Pakistan and DPRK. as these two countries are close to china and also they dont have aukaat to buy the better of those two planes.
     
  13. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    And what exactly is your "auqaat"?
    Ask the Russians.
     
  14. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    Pakistan in talks to buy '30-40 FC-31s'


    The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) is in talks with China to buy 30 to 40 of the Shenyang FC-31 twin-engined stealth fighter displayed at Airshow China 2014 in Zhuhai, a senior Pakistani government official has revealed to IHS Jane's .

    "The discussions are beyond initial inquiries and they fit into the pattern of Pakistan being the first export customer of Chinese [military] hardware," said the official.

    The FC-31 was unveiled as an export model at Zhuhai, although a prototype with the J-31 designation has been flying at a Shenyang Aircraft Corporation facility since 2012.

    In 2007 then air chief marshal Tanvir Mahmood Ahmed, who at the time was PAF chief of staff, told IHS Jane's that Islamabad was considering the purchase of up to two squadrons or 30 to 40 of Chengdu J-10 fighters.


    Airshow China 2014: Pakistan in talks to buy '30-40 FC-31s' - IHS Jane's 360
     
  15. Ashutosh Lokhande

    Ashutosh Lokhande Senior Member Senior Member

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    truth hurt?

    BTW Money is no hurdle for us.we buy best of wepons and fighter aircrafts money can buy.not like you guyz. chini maal which has no warranty gaurantee and is rejected by world as crap. :lol:
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2014
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  16. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    Yeah we already know the quality of your imported stuff. Either it sinks, falls out of the sky or ejects the pilots automatically. Keep them grounded, at least you are saving some fuel and precious lives.
     
  17. sayareakd

    sayareakd Moderator Moderator

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    Its only 5 g airframe, without 5 g engine, may be some fancy internal bay. China is put it on table to export without even completing its development, best part they dont want it for their airforce. Just like Junk fighter JF17.
     
  18. sayareakd

    sayareakd Moderator Moderator

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    I think they will thrown in some to Pakistan AF for free, as they will advertise it on the top of their voice for free. Remember it is not the machine, but the man behind the machine matters............:rofl:
     
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  19. Neeraj Mathur

    Neeraj Mathur Regular Member

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    which one are u guys buying j-10 or FC-31.
    u cant afford both for sure
     
  20. Neil

    Neil Senior Member Senior Member

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    this is the most confusing part... why buy a jet when even the country of origin is not buying it? even if money is issue..why not buy less number but still have similarity between both their AF's? kickbacks?!!
     
  21. Ashutosh Lokhande

    Ashutosh Lokhande Senior Member Senior Member

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    lol as if theres no accidents in PAF. :lol: atleast we buy our aircrafts from our own money. not like you guyz begging or on a soft loan :lol:
    tum logon ki aukaat chini maal kharidne tak hi hain. usi me khush raho tum. :)
    i know it hurt but its true.
     
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