Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Bangladesh eyeing purchase of 10 Russian Yak-130 aircraft

Bangladesh is eyeing possible purchase of 10 Russian-made Yak-130 lead-in fighter trainer aircraft, a news report said on Wednesday.

Russia's official news agency Itar-Tass in a Singapore-datelined report said on Wednesday that talks were at the initial stage.

"Bangladesh has a big budget, more to it, a state loan might be used," president of Russia's aircraft building corporation Irkut Alexei Fyoforov was quoted as saying by the agency.

Fyoforov reportedly said the market capacity for Yak-130 aircraft might reach 2,500 planes till the year 2020.

"We hope to grip from 25 to 30 percent of this market," he was quoted as saying.

The Yakovlev Yak-130 (NATO reporting name: Mitten) is a subsonic two-seat advanced jet trainer/light attack aircraft or lead-in fighter trainer (LIFT) developed by the Yakovlev Design Bureau.

Development of the plane began in 1991, and the maiden flight was conducted on April 26, 1996, the report said.

In 2005, it won a Russian government tender for training aircraft, and in 2009 the first planes were put into service in the Russian Air Force.

As an advanced training aircraft, the Yak-130 is able to replicate the characteristics of several 4+ generation fighters as well as the fifth-generation Sukhoi T-50, it said.

It can also perform light-attack and reconnaissance duties, carrying a combat load of 3,000 kilogrammes.

The report could not be independently confirmed.