Boeing has secured a licence from the US Government to provide its F-15EX fighter aircraft to the Indian Air Force (IAF).
The news was announced by Boeing Defense, Space & Security India Fighters lead Ankur Kanaglekar, Reuters reported.
The US firm will compete with Sweden’s Gripen and France’s Rafale jets among others for IAF’s intention to buy 114 jets, which will replace its Soviet-era fleet.
In July, the US Air Force (USAF) awarded Boeing a $1.2bn contract for the production of the first lot of eight F-15EX advanced fighter aircraft.
The two-seat fighter jet has the capability to launch hypersonic weapons up to 22ft long and weighs up to 7,000lb.
With minimal transitional training and no infrastructure changes, the platform ensures continued mission operations.
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F-15EX’s Open Mission Systems (OMS) architecture enables rapid insertion of the latest aircraft technologies, including a new electronic warfare system, advanced cockpit systems, and the latest mission systems and software capabilities.
Ankur Kanaglekar told reporters that talks on the F-15EX were held earlier between the governments of the two countries.
The news agency quoted Ankur as saying: “Now that we have the marketing licence it allows us to talk to the Indian Air Force directly about the capability of the fighter. We have started doing that in a small way.”
India and the US have a strategic partnership, with the Indian military purchasing more than $20bn worth of weapons in the past 15 years.