India to start talks on $12 billion fighter jet order

asian defence
by Staff Writers
Bangalore, India (AFP) Feb 10, 2011
India said Thursday it would begin crucial contract negotiations in the next fortnight for an estimated $12 billion order for 126 fighter jets.
The announcement came a day after Indian Defence Minister A.K. Antony said the long-delayed contract to modernise India's decades-old aircraft fleet would be handed out during the next fiscal year starting April 1.

asian defence

"The contract negotiation committee will begin discussions in a week or two," Indian Airforce chief P.V. Naik told reporters on the sidelines of South Asia's biggest airshow in Bangalore, the hub of India's aviation industry.

Six global aeronautical companies, which are in a dogfight to grab the deal to sell the 126 Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA), each claimed at the airshow that their products were the world's best. "The Indian airforce is very pleased with the performance of the F-16 and we are hopeful of being shortlisted," said Orville Prins of U.S-based Lockheed Martin which wants to sell its frontline fighter jet to India.

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