Procurement: Argentina Plays The China Card

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October 26, 2011: China has licensed an Argentinian firm to build military versions (CZ-11Ws) of the Chinese Z-11 helicopter. Despite a Western arms embargo, China is able to buy Honeywell LTS101-700D-2 engines for its Z-11 light helicopter. Normally, American military grade equipment cannot be sold to China, but the Z-11 is considered a civilian helicopter. This despite the fact that there is a military version, which is armed with four anti-tank missiles, two 12.7mm machine-guns or four rocket launchers. The 2.2 ton Z-11 can carry up to six people, cruises at 259 kilometers an hour and has an endurance of 4-5 hours.

There is no such embargo on Argentina, so they will be able to buy American equipment for their Chinese designed helicopter gunships. However, because of the way American export laws work, these Argentinian gunships could not be sold back to China. Argentina plans to build about 40 CZ-11Ws.

 

 


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