US firms eye Indian defence market

11-Apr-2016 #India-US Source: India Inc
Two of the world’s largest aerospace and defence manufacturers are poised to take on the Indian government’s Make in India invitation. Boeing and Lockheed Martin, the US-based rivals in the field of global aerospace, defence, security and advanced technologies, jointly met for government-level talks in New Delhi recently to explore the prospect of locally manufacturing the F16 ‘Super Viper’ and a customised F/A 18 ‘Super Hornet’ for the Indian Air Force (IAF). The meeting, being seen as the first step towards a possible foreign military sales (FMS) proposal, was held in the presence of the Pentagon's director for international cooperation Keith Webster. Indian defence minister Manohar Parrikar had earlier announced that the ministry is interested in setting up production lines for “one or two” fighters at the earliest. Since the Rafael deal is stuck in a deadlock, India considers the possibility as an opportunity. The Modi government is set to take a final decision in this regard after US defence secretary Ashton Carter’s meeting with Parrikar scheduled for April.
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