Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Political battle for India`a next fighter intensifies with German Chancellor visit



With a $10.4-billion tender for supply of 126 combat planes to India in the pipeline, visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel Tuesday made a pitch for the Eurofighter Typhoon jets, built by Germany-led four-nation consortium EADS Cassidian.
With the Eurofighter, we have made good proposals and want to intensify our relationship with India. The Eurofighter is the best product on offer,’ Merkel told a joint press conference along with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the first day of her two-day visit here.
Merkel, however, stressed, that she will not exert any influence on the procurement process and ‘we shall wait and see’.


Political circles have increasingly been driving home their commercial interests for military deals with India.The latest one being France assuring India that "[India's] concern about weapon sales [by France to Pakistan] was raised… the military equipment is for electronic communication interception… we have discouraged any requirement for naval equipment,” Mr. Longuet said in an interaction with journalists on Friday at the end of his two-day visit". And there goes the French push. France had earlier supplied Agosta submarines to Pakistan,and if the latest reports are to go by, France has suspended military sales to Pakistan.This may augur well for India ( but only if it decides on the Dassault Rafale ) -else things may fall back to Pakistan again.Coz at the end of the day, business seems to be the most important factor for the French , rather than the Indo-Pak tussle.




The combat jet tender, described as ‘mother of all deals’ in Indian military circles, is in its final stages.
India had earlier this month shortlisted Eurofighter Typhoon (jointly manufactured by Germany, Italy, Spain and Britain), along with Rafale from French firm Dassault for the competition.
In the process, India has rejected fighter jets from the Americans (Boeing’s F/A-18s and Lockheed Martin’s F-16s), Russians (United Aircraft Corporation’s MiG-35) and the Swedes (SAAB’s Gripen).
India is expected to decide on the ultimate winner of the contract end of 2011. The contract entails investment of nearly 50 percent of the deal amount back in domestic defence industry, A condition the defence ministry imposes on many of its big deals in a bid to improvise the home grown defence Industry.

1 comments:

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