The Tanzania People’s Defence Force (TPDF) Air Force and the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which paves way for the provision of Pakistani equipment and specialised training for the Tanzanian Air Force.
In terms of the MoU which was signed between TPDF Air Force commander Major General Joseph Furaha Kapwani and Chief of Air Staff of the PAF Air Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt, Pakistan undertook to train Tanzanian air force personnel in the domains of operations, training, equipment maintenance, security and the military application of information and communication technology (ICT).
The signing of the agreement in the Tanzanian capital Dar es Salaam last week marked a new era in the defence and diplomatic relationship of the two countries.
The visiting Pakistani air force chief hailed the MoU on defence saying it lays the groundwork for formal talks and the initiation of mutual exchanges which will ultimately strengthen the bilateral defence relationship between the two nations.
“We have historical cooperation with Tanzania and the MoU will revitalise the good relations between Tanzania and Pakistan,” Butt said.
Kapwani said the mutual defence cooperation agreement has created an ideal platform for his force to share its experiences with their Pakistani counterparts.
“Under the MoU, members of the TPDF will have an opportunity to receive training by the Pakistan Air Force,” Kapwani said.
During his four-day visit to Tanzania, the Pakistani air force chief attended a briefing on structure and functions of the TPDF Air Force and visited the country’s main air base in Mwanza.
The Tanzania-Pakistan defence co-operation agreement follows the November 2012 tour of the International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS) in Karachi by former Tanzanian Minister of Defence and National Service Shamsi Nadodha.
During his visit, Nadodha expressed interest in a wide range of indigenous Pakistani defence products including rifles, machines guns, main battle tanks, naval vessels, unmanned aerial vehicles, helicopters, fighter and trainer jets.