Offers of Technology Development to India

The US has offered increased industrial cooperation and technology transfer to India during US Defense Secretary James Mattis’ visit to New Delhi in September. During ministerial-level talks, it was agreed to expand the scope of the 2012 bilateral joint Defense Technology and Trade Initiative. This expansion covers cooperation on a range of technologies, and confirms US willingness to approve production of the Lockheed Martin F-16C and the Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet in India to meet the nation’s fighter requirements.

Rolls-Royce has offered India’s Defence Research and Development Organization collaboration on gas turbine technologies to support the goal of expanding indigenous capabilities. This follows UK-India governmental agreements, announced in April, to expand defence industrial cooperation and enable technology transfer. Rolls-Royce has facilities in India at Bangalore and Pune. Russia’s offers include participation in several potential aircraft co-production programmes as follow-ons to the current licensed production – scheduled to conclude in 2019–20 – of Sukhoi Su-30MKI Flanker fighters, with final assembly being carried out by India’s HAL. Also mentioned was the transition of HAL’s production line to joint production of Yakolev Yak-130 trainers and increased participation in the United Aircraft Corporation MC-21 airliner. In conjunction with its offer of Israeli Aircraft Industries’ modified Boeing KC- 767-300 tankers to meet India’s tanker requirement, Israel has also offered an increased level of Indian participation in the tanker conversions and to expand its long-standing technology cooperation with India. This has previously included extensive work in missiles and sensors.

David C Isby