Tribune News Service
New Delhi, April 6
India has asked the United States to stand guarantee for transfer of technology, if any US-based company bids for the fighter jet programme under the “Make in India” initiative.
This was part of the two-day talks held between the defence policy groups of the two countries in the run-up to the meeting between Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and his US counterpart Ashton Carter. The two leaders will meet for delegation-level talks on April 12 in New Delhi. Carter will arrive in Goa on April 10.
Boeing and Lockheed Martin have submitted proposals for fighter jets under the Centre’s “Make in India” initiative.
India is looking for additional fighter jets once it signs the Rafale deal with Dassualt Aviation of France. Sources said Swedish company Saab that makes the Gripen jet has committed to transfer of technology.
In the past, transfer of technology has been a major issue as India has refused to sign three agreements that the US terms "foundational agreements". The US wants India to sign the three pacts so that the Defence Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI) could progress in the right direction.
The agreements are: Communications interoperability and security memorandum of agreement (CISMOA), basic exchange and cooperation agreement for geo-spatial cooperation (BECA) and the logistics support agreement (LSA). Of these, the LSA is in an advanced stage of talks.
Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha has recently said the government is planning to start a “second assembly line” for fighter planes under the “Make in India” project. The first being the locally made Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) — the Tejas.
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