Founded in 1958 for jet fighter and jet trainer development and production, based on original Soviet designs. J- 7 tactical fighter and air-defense interceptor first flew in January 1966, developed from the Soviet MiG-21 F-13 following 1960-1961 discussions between the two nations, though technology transfer had not been completed when cooperation came to an abrupt end. J-7 originally assembled by Shenyang, but production moved to Chengdu in 1967. Many new versions followed, including F-7 Airguards for export, with production and development continuing in 1999. A replacement for J-7/F-7 has been under development as the FC-1. Another early program led to the JJ-5 which first flew in May 1966 as an advanced lead-in/fighter conversion trainer, based on the Shenyang J-5A single-seat fighter (itself a Chinese-produced variant of the Soviet MiG-17PF), but with a MiG-15UJI-style tandem cockpit arrangement. Much more recently, Chengdu has also developed the new J-10 as a very advanced multirole fighter, first flown in March 1998 and possibly using some technology derived from the abandoned Israeli Lavi program of the 1980s. A further multirole fighter has been under development as J-12, about which little is yet known.

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