Gulf countries import half of Pakistan Ordnance Factories arms supplies

Almost 50 percent of arms and ammunition exports from Pakistan Ordnance Factory (POF) come to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, Chairman of the POF Board, Lieutenant General Omar Mahmood Hayat, has said.

Speaking to Al Arabiya on the sidelines of the recently-held Internal Defense Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) in Abu Dhabi, General Hayat said that Gulf has always been very important region for the arms manufacturer.

“Our relationship with each Gulf state has its own context. Overall as a region, there has always been a very sound and very solid relationship. There have seen some ups and downs but our focus has not changed,” General Hayat aid.

Lieutenant General Omar Mahmood Hayat graduated in September 1983 from Pakistan Military Academy in Ordnance Corps. During his more than 32 years of service to the Pakistani army, he has held various command, staff and instructional appointments.

According to Hayat, selling arms and ammunition all over the world is not only about business but about building relationships, “especially those that are strategic in nature”, he said. POF has also announced that it is setting up its commercial office in Dubai to boost sales to the region. The Dubai office, according to him, will be the second international sales office run by POF, after London.

Going commercial

General Hayat said that besides catering to the requirements within the country, POF is now focusing on export and commercial sale.

“We manufacture weapons and equipment, which have been extensively used by Pakistan armed forces during the war against terrorism. In the last three years, our production has seen a 100 percent jump and in the last two years, our export and commercial sales have seen 300 percent jump. I don’t think there is any parallel to this in any part of the world,” said Hayat.

At IDEX, POF initiated negotiations for deals worth of $25 million and Hayat said he is confident that Dubai office will lead to many successful deals. “The purpose of starting in Dubai is purely commercial.” He said he is confident that GCC countries would buy weapons made in Pakistan because of their quality at a good price.

POF claims to be the largest defense industrial complex under Pakistan’s Ministry of Defense Production, producing conventional arms and ammunitions to international standards.

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