Monday, May 13, 2024

China proposes Y-20 transport plane to Nigeria

China has offered Nigeria the Y-20 Kunpeng transport aircraft, colloquially known as the “Chubby Girl.”

According to the Nigerian Defense News, the Y-20E is the largest military aircraft produced by China, showcased to Nigeria’s Defense Minister Mohammed Badar Abubakar during a diplomatic visit to Beijing in November 2023.

Revealed to the world for the first time at the Dubai Air Show in December 2023, the Y-20 serves as China’s counterpart to the American C-17 Globemaster. While Nigeria currently relies on the C-130 Hercules as its primary tactical airlifter, the introduction of the Y-20E will grant the country genuine strategic airlift capabilities.

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China’s first domestically developed heavy airlifter, the Y-20, commenced development in the mid-2000s, took its inaugural flight in 2013, and entered active service in 2016. Although the exact number in service remains undisclosed, estimates suggest a fleet of at least 60 aircraft.

Measuring approximately 150 feet in length, 50 feet in height, with a wingspan of 160 feet, and boasting a range close to 5,000 miles, the Y-20 offers a versatile platform for various military and humanitarian operations.

Y-20’s functionalities encompass airborne command-and-control, logistics and airdrops, aerial refueling, strategic reconnaissance, as well as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, as outlined in the Pentagon’s recent report on the Chinese military.

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Executive Editor

About author:

Daisuke Sato
Daisuke Sato
Daisuke Sato is defense reporter, covering the Asia-Pacific defense industrial base, defense markets and all related issues. He has covered the US and Japan bilateral exercises for several years.

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