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