U.S. Beats Russia to India Helicopter Gunship Deal - Paper
U.S. aerospace giant Boeing has won a $1.4 billion deal to supply India with 22 helicopter gunships, beating off competition from Russia's Mil Mi-28, the Times of India reported on Tuesday.
Only the Boeing AH-64 could meet all the Indian armed forces' air staff qualitative requirements, the paper said.
"It's just a matter of time before the contract is inked for the Apaches after final commercial negotiations. Most of the hurdles have been cleared,'' a defense ministry official told the paper.
The deal will also include advanced AN/APG-78 fire control radars for the Apaches as well as Hellfire anti-tank and Stinger anti-aircraft missiles.
Russia is also facing stiff U.S. competition in a tender to supply 15 heavy-lift helicopters to the Indian forces. Russia is offering its Mil Mi-26, the world's largest rotary-wing machine, while Boeing is proposing its veteran CH-47 Chinook.
India, traditionally one of Russia's core customers for arms, has placed several large defense orders with the United States this year, including a $4.1 billion contract for 10 Boeing C-17 Globemaster-III strategic airlifters, $2.1 billion for eight P-8I Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft and $962 million for six C-130J transport aircraft.
Source: MOSCOW | RIA Novosti News - 21 August 2012
Photo: A U.S. Army AH-64 Apache helicopter makes a low pass outside Combat Outpost Sangar in Zabul province, Afghanistan, July 1, 2010. (U.S. Army credit photo by Spc. Eric Cabral/Release