Surprise third American entry for Indian fighter jet deal, F 15EX in the fray

Defence cooperation will be at the top of the agenda during President Donald Trump visit. The partnership has moved ahead in the past few years to include key pacts on secure communication and sharing of military logistics that open the possibility of joint operations in the near future. The Navy-Navy cooperation in particular has taken the front seat. On the acquisition side, India has procured the C 17 `Globemaster’ and C 130J Hercules transporters, the Apache and Chinook helicopters among other equipment from the US. The following are in an advanced stage of discussion in the near future, reports Manu Pubby.

Naval Guns

The Indian side is moving towards signing a deal to acquire 127 mm calibre ship mounted guns from the US under a government deal. The US Congress has approved the procurement of 13 of these for an estimated $ 1 billion. The project is being seen as a priority for the Navy that needs these for under construction destroyers. This deal, to be signed with BAE Systems, could be inked in the coming financial year.


In addition to the air force, which is inducting 22 of the Apache attack helicopters, the Army too is in line to acquire at least six, under a deal that is estimated at close to $ 930 million. The contract can be inked when budgetary provision are made available to the Army.


The National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System (NASAMS) is designed to protect the national capital from all incoming air threats. The US State Department has this week notified its Congress of a possible sale to India, valued at $ 1.8 billion. The only hitch will be the price as the Indian side expected it to be below the $ 1 billion mark.

Naval Multi Role Helicopters

The proposal to purchase 24 of the advanced MH 60 `Romeo’ choppers, which can be deployed from warships, is in the final stages of signing. The Navy considers these choppers extremely essential as their absence poses serious operational risks to warships at sea. The deal is valued at $ 2.6 billion.

The Fighters’ Pitch

US may pitch its combat jets for two major upcoming Indian acquisitions.

Indian Air Force: The US will be pitching its F 21 (a variant of the F 16) as well as the F/A 18 Super Hornet for an upcoming contest to supply 114.

Indian Navy: The requirement for 57 of modern aircraft carrier borne jets has seen a keen interest from the US that has its F/A 18 Super Hornet on offer.

P 8Is: The Navy has got permission to go ahead with a multi-billion dollar acquisition of six additional Boeing P8 I maritime patrol aircraft that will add to its surveillance capabilities in the Indian Ocean Region.