India Overtakes China in Global Air Power Ranking; PLA Has More Jets But Lags Behind IAF in Attack Capabilities

India has overtaken China in the global airpower ranking. The Indian Air Force ranked sixth while the Chinese Air Force ranks seventh in the newly released Global Air Power Ranking 2022. The report prepared by the World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft (WDMMA) placed IAF above the People's Liberation Army Air Force on the basis of True Value Rating (TVR), a method used to define rating on the analysis of the total fighting strength on various parameters of the air services.

WDMMA claimed that TVR helps to definitively separate each power based on not only overall strength but modernization, logistical support, attack, and defense capabilities.

Indian Air Force

Services Ranked on The Basis of Modernization, Attack Capabilities

The US Air Force (USAF) received the highest TVR score of 242.9 followed by the US Navy (142.4) and the Russian Air Force (114.2). India's TVR score is 69.4 while Chinese Air Force attained 63.8.

Global Air Powers Ranking (2022)
Global Air Powers Ranking (2022)

IAF Has 1645 Units in Its Active Aircraft Inventory

The report claims that the power is not simply assessed on its total quantity of aircraft but rather on quality and general mix of inventory. "TVR remains, however, a work-in-progress and is constantly revaluated as needed."

The report revealed that the IAF currently has 1645 units in its active aircraft inventory.

Indian Air Force Current Active Inventory
Indian Air Force's active inventory in 2022

The service currently counts 1,645 total units in its active aircraft inventory. The WDMMA review takes into account specific categories of aircraft covering an attack, logistics, special-mission, and general support types. The report tracked 124 services from 98 countries.

Global Air Power ranking
Global Air Power ranking Screengrab

The report stated that the force has 632 fighter jets, 438 helicopters, 250 transport aircraft, 304 trainers, and 7 aerial tanks.

According to the report, PLAAF currently has 2084 units in its active aircraft inventory. China has 120 bombers, 65 helicopters, 238 transport aircraft, 261 trainers, and 3 aerial tanks.

Indian Air Force
Indian Air Force's fighter jets Twitter

The current WDMMA inventory consists of 98 countries tracked, 124 air services covered (this includes Army, Navy, and Marine branches of service where applicable), and 47,840 total aircraft.

Indian Air Force
Indian Air Force Twitter

However, due to discrepancies regarding UAV reporting between countries and sources, unmanned vehicles are currently not tracked in the WDMMA report.