Indian Air Force begins process to procure 110 fighter jets worth $15 billion

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Mains Paper 3: Science & Technology | Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Read the attached story

Mains level: The proposed deal will give a push to ‘Make in India'(indigenization of defence technologies) in defence.


News

One of India’s largest defence orders in recent years

  1. The Indian Air Force set in motion the process of acquiring a fleet of 110 fighter jets worth an estimated $15 billion, one of its largest orders in recent years,
  2. in a bid to shore up its fast-depleting squadron strength

Process of acquiring the fleet

  1. The issue of the request for information (RFI) is the first step to acquiring the aircraft
  2. This will be followed by a request for proposal (RFP) or a formal tender, to be followed by evaluations, technical trials and commercial negotiations

Push to ‘make in India’

  1. According to a statement on the defence ministry’s website, at least 85% of the jets have to be made in India, giving a big push to India’s “Make in India” programme
  2. In other words, the aircraft have to be jointly produced by a foreign aircraft maker along with an Indian company under the recently-launched strategic partnership model which aims to bring in high-end defence technology to India

Participating aircraft producers for the bid

  1. Leading military aircraft producers, including US firms Lockheed Martin and Boeing, Sweden’s Saab and France’s Dassault Aviation, are among those likely to vie for the mega deal

Depleting squadron strength

  1. According to estimates, some 400 aircraft will be going out of service in the next decade
  2. Many of these are the Russian-made MiG aircraft which have been the backbone of the Indian Air Force for decades
  3. The Indian Air Force and navy require as many as 400 single- and double-engine combat aircraft, according to government figures
Defence Sector – DPP, Missions, Schemes, Security Forces, etc.
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