The Egyptian Air Force signed an agreement to purchase drones, believed to be the Wing Loong II attack-reconnaissance UAVs, from China’s National Aero-Technology Import and Export Corporation (CATIC).
The agreement was signed Commander of Egyptian air forces, Mohamed Abbas and CATIC officials on the sidelines of the EDEX 2018 exhibition held in Cairo earlier this week, an official announcement said.
CATIC had displayed a model of the Wing Loong II drone at the EDEX exhibiton, though the company made no announcement of a sale to Egypt. The Wing Loong drone is said to compete in features with the Predator medium altitude long range (MALE) drone made by the US firm, General Atomics.
Last month, the Egyptian Ministry of Defence had shown a video of the Wing Loong drone, taking off with missiles on its hard-points and knocking off a ground target. The publicity video was telecast on Egyptian media on the occasion of the 45th Air Force Day.
The publication of the video indicates that Egypt may already be in possession of the drones and may have signed up to buy more or them. Besides the Wing Loong, CATIC also manufactures the Harrier, a reconnaissance drone capable of long endurance.
Chinese firms generally do not announce sales of military wares to foreign countries. Information published in international media is shared in state-owned Chinese publications with local defence experts commenting on the possible sale.