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India Reviews Offsets for Fighter Program

This article first appeared at Aerospace Daily & Defense Report.

New Delhi -- Prospective vendors submitted their offsets package Aug. 4 for India's Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) program.

The proposal was submitted in response to the MMRCA request for proposals (RFPs), which asked all competitors to provide an "industrial participation" (IP) plan as part of their offering.

The RFP for the 126-aircraft MMRCA program went out to Boeing, Eurofighter, Gripen, Lockheed Martin, MiG and Rafale, and the companies submitted their bids in April.

Lockheed said its offer included a wide range of projects including investment, manufacturing, export creation and joint development.

"Lockheed Martin is committed to working with our industrial partners and Indian defense industry to develop long-term, high-value projects that bring technology and sustainable business to India," said Orville Prins, a Lockheed vice president for business development.

The giant contractor, based outside Washington, D.C., is touting its history of having established four F-16 production lines outside of the United States as one of its selling points. It says it has achieved over $37 billion in offset program credits in 40 countries - "all without default or penalty. A proven cornerstone of these programs is the ability to provide transfer of technology to program partners."

Boeing claims it has a formidable industrial lineup that includes a supplier team of 16 leading aerospace and defense companies with combined revenues of over $454 billion, as well as 37 public- and private-sector Indian companies.

Earlier this year, Boeing reached agreement to form a joint venture with Tata Industries Ltd. Last year, it reached another deal with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, which is adopting Boeing's "Lean" and best-management practices. Boeing has also signed an agreement with international engineering firm Larsen & Toubro for joint exploration of business opportunities in the Indian defense market.

-- Neelam Mathews

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