The Indian Air Force (IAF) is reportedly planning to procure 114 multirole fighter aircraft (MRFA), with 96 aircraft to be produced within the country.
A report by Asian News International (ANI) said that the remaining 18 of 114 aircraft would be purchased from foreign manufacturers selected under the new project.
The fighter jets are being acquired under the Government of India’s (GOI) ‘Buy Global and Make in India’ initiative, which allows local companies to collaborate with international vendors.
Foreign aircraft manufacturers such as Lockheed Martin, Irkut, Boeing, Saab, Dassault Aviation and MiG are expected to participate in the tender process.
ANI cited undisclosed government sources as saying: “Recently, the Indian Air Force held meetings with the foreign vendors and asked them about the way they would carry out the Make in India project.”
Once the initial 18 aircraft are procured from international companies, India will focus on building the 96 aircraft within the country.
As per the report, payment for the first 36 of 96 aircraft would be made in foreign and Indian currencies.
The last batch of 60 MFRA is anticipated to be the crucial responsibility of the Indian partners. The payment for this batch would be made in Indian currency only.
According to the sources, this payment arrangement assists the vendors in the project to achieve more than 60% Make-in-India content.
In 2016, India and France signed an inter-governmental agreement for the delivery of 36-Rafale Jet aircraft.
Last year, India approved the procurement of 83 light combat aircraft (LCA) Tejas Mk-1A.