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HomeBusinessIndia signs $2.1bn defence deal with Boeing

India signs $2.1bn defence deal with Boeing


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INDIA has signed a $2.1bn (£1.4bn) contract with leading US aircraft manufacturer Boeing Co for naval patrol aircraft as part of an overhaul of the South Asian nation’s mainly old Soviet military hardware.

India , fast becoming one of the world’s biggest arms importers, said at least eight of the P-8I anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare planes would be delivered in four years.

"The deal has been signed and the delivery of the P-8I should start in four years’ time," defence ministry spokesman Sitanshu Kar said yesterday.

India is looking to spend $30bn (£20bn) on imports over the next five years to modernise its largely Soviet-era arms and is also trying to strengthen its navy by introducing new weapons systems.

Boeing plans to make inroads into the South Asian defence market and has already submitted a bid for a contract to supply India with 126 multi-role fighter jets, potentially worth more than $10bn (£5bn).

Last July, Boeing said it would bid for defence projects in India worth up to $20bn (£10bn) over the next 10 years.

India is also keen to strengthen its own aerospace industry and has asked major weapons exporting countries to transfer defence technology to India .

Defence experts said the P-8I would give India an edge over its rivals. The aircraft would carry air-to-surface missiles as well as anti-shipping missiles to tackle sea-based threats, a defence official said.

A Boeing spokesman in New Delhi said the company would release a detailed statement on the deal in two days.

Last month, India successfully tested a supersonic cruise missile from a moving ship, in what officials said was a major boost for its defence capabilities.


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