Ozair
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India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:49 pm

India have accepted the first Rafale. While the aircraft won’t arrive in India until next year Indian pilots will train in France and fly a significant number of hours before returning to India.

Rumours and suggestions continue about a follow on deal for another 36 Rafales while Dassault remains in contention for the 110 aircraft IAF order and the Indian Navy requirement for 50+ new aircraft. If Dassault wins both then India would operate as many if not more Rafales than France intends to.

Dassault Aviation hands over first Rafale multirole fighter to India

France’s Dassault Aviation has handed over the first of 36 Rafale multirole fighter aircraft that New Delhi ordered in September 2016 for the Indian Air Force (IAF) for EUR7.9 billion (USD8.71 billion).

Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh officially accepted the aircraft in a ceremony held at Dassault’s assembly facility in Bordeaux-Mérignac on 8 October that coincided with the Hindu festival of Dussehra and the 87th founding anniversary of the IAF.

Singh said that the new twin-engined aircraft will enhance the capabilities of the IAF, adding that New Delhi’s procurement of the Rafale “will go a long way in strengthening strategic ties between India and France”.

The minister, who had held talks with French President Emmanuel Macron earlier that day, also thanked the French government for providing support and training to IAF pilots.

The aircraft, which bears tail number RB 001, is expected to arrive in India in May 2020 as part of a first batch of four Rafales that will be ferried to Ambala Air Force Station (AFS) for induction into the IAF’s 17 ‘Golden Arrow’ Squadron, which was formally reinstated on 10 September, about eight years after it was decommissioned following the retirement of its Soviet-era MiG-21 aircraft.

Before arriving in India the Rafales will be flown by IAF pilots in France for at least 1,500 hours as part of the testing and acceptance process.

While one Rafale squadron of 18 fighters, including four dual-seat trainers, will be based at Ambala AFS near India’s border with Pakistan, the second one, which will have a similar configuration, will be stationed at Hasimara AFS in northeastern India near the country’s disputed border with China. These aircraft are set to be inducted into the IAF’s 101 ‘Falcons’ Squadron, which is also set to be reinstated.

...

https://www.janes.com/article/91757/das ... r-to-india

Image
 
Max Q
Posts: 7700
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 12:40 pm

Re: India accepts first Rafale

Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:07 am

That is one good looking aircraft, shame about the refueling probe, spoils those amazing lines

The F16 still takes the cake for best looking though !
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


Guns and the love of them by a loud minority are a malignant and deadly cancer inflicted on American society
 
steman
Posts: 1566
Joined: Wed Aug 09, 2000 4:55 pm

Re: India accepts first Rafale

Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:09 am

What is the Dassault designation for Indian Rafales? BH for the twin seat and EH or MH for the single seat and naval?
Is Dassault keeping its tradition Country code for export Rafales? So Qatari ones should be EQ and Egyptian ones EE?
 
angad84
Posts: 2021
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2012 3:04 pm

Re: India accepts first Rafale

Sun Oct 13, 2019 10:03 am

steman wrote:
What is the Dassault designation for Indian Rafales? BH for the twin seat and EH or MH for the single seat and naval?
Is Dassault keeping its tradition Country code for export Rafales? So Qatari ones should be EQ and Egyptian ones EE?

EH/DH for India
EM/DM for Egypt ('Misr' is Egypt)
EQ/DQ for Qatar
 
steman
Posts: 1566
Joined: Wed Aug 09, 2000 4:55 pm

Re: India accepts first Rafale

Sun Oct 13, 2019 10:08 am

angad84 wrote:
steman wrote:
What is the Dassault designation for Indian Rafales? BH for the twin seat and EH or MH for the single seat and naval?
Is Dassault keeping its tradition Country code for export Rafales? So Qatari ones should be EQ and Egyptian ones EE?

EH/DH for India
EM/DM for Egypt ('Misr' is Egypt)
EQ/DQ for Qatar


Thank you very much.
I always liked Dassault´s customer code system. Mirage III and F1 ended up with so many different denominations due to the high number of export sales. I doubt we´ll see that many again.
 
Ozair
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Mon Oct 14, 2019 2:03 am

Anyone have a flightglobal subscription and can give a brief synopsis of the opinion piece below?

Why India must learn from Rafale procurement

Pronouncements at aircraft handover ceremonies are not prone to understatement. Indeed, Dassault hailed its delivery of the first of 36 Rafale fighters to New Delhi as a “celebration of the history of mutual trust” between the French company and India.

...

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... me-461382/
 
angad84
Posts: 2021
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:19 pm

Ozair wrote:
Anyone have a flightglobal subscription and can give a brief synopsis of the opinion piece below?

Why India must learn from Rafale procurement

Pronouncements at aircraft handover ceremonies are not prone to understatement. Indeed, Dassault hailed its delivery of the first of 36 Rafale fighters to New Delhi as a “celebration of the history of mutual trust” between the French company and India.

...

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... me-461382/

It's free, just a short editorial — key bits below

"the nation's 2016 deal for 36 French-assembled Rafales represents no great success for New Delhi or Dassault, but a concession prize. It happened only because a 126-aircraft medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) deal collapsed. Although the Rafale secured preferred status in 2012, three years of negotiation between Dassault and New Delhi ended in failure."

"New Delhi’s latest requirement for 110 fighters – cynically dubbed by some as ‘MMRCA 2.0’ – features the same contestants as last time. It is to be hoped that lessons have been learned. Soaking up platitudes from a defence contractor is far easier than avoiding a repetition of history."
 
dtw2hyd
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Mon Oct 14, 2019 1:43 pm

Ozair wrote:
Anyone have a flightglobal subscription and can give a brief synopsis of the opinion piece below?

Why India must learn from Rafale procurement


Learn how not to do it. IMHO, This is one of the worst offset deals. No wonder Dassault is celebrating.

I guess 36 are enough to protect Gujarat. Who needs 126. The rest of the country can defend itself using Bisons.
 
golfradio
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Mon Oct 14, 2019 2:36 pm

36 is better than bubkis. Without this deal not a single Rafale would have ever sported an IAF roundel. MMRCA 1.0 was hogwash,
CSeries forever. Bring back the old site.
 
Ozair
Topic Author
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Mon Oct 14, 2019 8:32 pm

angad84 wrote:
It's free, just a short editorial — key bits below

Thanks. Not much we don’t already know or have discussed here.

dtw2hyd wrote:
Learn how not to do it. IMHO, This is one of the worst offset deals. No wonder Dassault is celebrating.

I guess 36 are enough to protect Gujarat. Who needs 126. The rest of the country can defend itself using Bisons.

If India selects the Rafale for the upcoming competition then in hindsight it will all seem worth it. Potentially even if they select a different aircraft and also top up the Rafale with another 36 it will seem worth it. The second 36 would come at a lesser overall cost given a lot of the infrastructure and support has already been established.

If Indian Rafale numbers remain at 36 then it will be somewhat of an orphan fleet and, while I have no doubt that India would hold on to them for many years, their role in the IAF force structure would likely change.

golfradio wrote:
36 is better than bubkis. Without this deal not a single Rafale would have ever sported an IAF roundel. MMRCA 1.0 was hogwash,

It just went on too long. Looking at other fighter competitions five years seems to be about right from start to order to allow the manufacturers to get their bids aligned to the requirements and for the respective nations to properly assess and adjust the RFP as required for the best solution. I think MMRCA went for 11+ years and MMRCA 2.0 seems to be heading in the same direction.
 
dtw2hyd
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:58 am

In the long run orphaned Rafale squadrons is not a bad idea. India has to buy every single component from Dassault for Rafale's entire life cycle.

Dassault dragged the previous negotiations with HAL because it didn't want to transfer any Rafale technology to India, its wish got fulfilled 100%.

Reliance got the bad rapport, but all it got is order for few metal Falcon parts, nothing to do with Rafale.

On a side note, I was expecting a large F-16 order announced in Houston with similar offset. Going by the Rafale deal a hypothetical Lockheed Martin Mango Importers Inc., would have sufficed as offset.
 
Ozair
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 1:58 am

dtw2hyd wrote:
In the long run orphaned Rafale squadrons is not a bad idea. India has to buy every single component from Dassault for Rafale's entire life cycle.

So if Rafale numbers remain at 36 what will India use them for in the future, dedicated nuclear delivery platform?

dtw2hyd wrote:
Dassault dragged the previous negotiations with HAL because it didn't want to transfer any Rafale technology to India, its wish got fulfilled 100%.

Reliance got the bad rapport, but all it got is order for few metal Falcon parts, nothing to do with Rafale.

Agree offsets and technology transfer are rarely what they are promised/expected to be. We have seen this recently with Turkey and S-400, previously South Korea with the F-35 as some other examples.

dtw2hyd wrote:
On a side note, I was expecting a large F-16 order announced in Houston with similar offset. Going by the Rafale deal a hypothetical Lockheed Martin Mango Importers Inc., would have sufficed as offset.

My expectation is that any F-16 order by India involves the production line moving to India for any Indian and subsequent orders past those currently on the books for LM Greenville. Obviously there would be some transition period given Indian suppliers would have to pick up a significant quantity of the components production but local assembly is the political key for winning any large India deal.
 
angad84
Posts: 2021
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 9:51 am

Ozair wrote:
If India selects the Rafale for the upcoming competition then in hindsight it will all seem worth it. Potentially even if they select a different aircraft and also top up the Rafale with another 36 it will seem worth it. The second 36 would come at a lesser overall cost given a lot of the infrastructure and support has already been established.

If Indian Rafale numbers remain at 36 then it will be somewhat of an orphan fleet and, while I have no doubt that India would hold on to them for many years, their role in the IAF force structure would likely change.

36 more can be had for around $4 billion, and delivered even quicker than this first lot.

Ozair wrote:
It just went on too long. Looking at other fighter competitions five years seems to be about right from start to order to allow the manufacturers to get their bids aligned to the requirements and for the respective nations to properly assess and adjust the RFP as required for the best solution. I think MMRCA went for 11+ years and MMRCA 2.0 seems to be heading in the same direction.

IAF ideally doesn't want to complicate the fleet, and will be more than glad to take another 36 Rafale (or more) right off the shelf. If this option is considered by the Government (at the cost of local production and this asinine 'Strategic Partnership' idea), IAF will happily give up MMRCA 2.0, aka MRFA (renamed, I suspect, because the letters MMRCA probably trigger PTSD in too many people).

Ozair wrote:
So if Rafale numbers remain at 36 what will India use them for in the future, dedicated nuclear delivery platform?

Silver bullet for the conventional force. Nuke alongside Mirage, and then alone once the Mirage is gone (2030-ish onward).

Ozair wrote:
My expectation is that any F-16 order by India involves the production line moving to India for any Indian and subsequent orders past those currently on the books for LM Greenville. Obviously there would be some transition period given Indian suppliers would have to pick up a significant quantity of the components production but local assembly is the political key for winning any large India deal.

The Indian MoD has a fantasy that aircraft can be produced in India cheaper or at the same cost as an existing facility abroad. The concept of non-recurring costs simply does not seem to compute. So no, I don't think local assembly alone is enough — bidders really need to understand the depth and scale of stupid they are working with, and contort themselves to ensure everything is kosher when the envelopes are finally opened.
 
dtw2hyd
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Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:11 pm

Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 1:18 pm

Ozair wrote:
...
My expectation is that any F-16 order by India involves the production line moving to India for any Indian and subsequent orders past those currently on the books for LM Greenville. Obviously there would be some transition period given Indian suppliers would have to pick up a significant quantity of the components production but local assembly is the political key for winning any large India deal.


Could you explain why a different set of rules for America?

Both LM and BDS already have a lot more Indian local production than Dassault. LM's C130 wing box or P8Is local content is significant in terms of technology transfer and local production. Russia gives mil grade titanium to HAL(a low-quality producer in Dassault's view) to mill its own parts.

Few Falcon 7X cockpit structures is a joke of an offset deal. Rafale deal is unique, and shouldn't be repeated ever again.

BTW, These can go NIB to NOS like AW101s.
 
texl1649
Posts: 1056
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 4:26 pm

dtw2hyd wrote:
Ozair wrote:
...
My expectation is that any F-16 order by India involves the production line moving to India for any Indian and subsequent orders past those currently on the books for LM Greenville. Obviously there would be some transition period given Indian suppliers would have to pick up a significant quantity of the components production but local assembly is the political key for winning any large India deal.


Could you explain why a different set of rules for America?

Both LM and BDS already have a lot more Indian local production than Dassault. LM's C130 wing box or P8Is local content is significant in terms of technology transfer and local production. Russia gives mil grade titanium to HAL(a low-quality producer in Dassault's view) to mill its own parts.

Few Falcon 7X cockpit structures is a joke of an offset deal. Rafale deal is unique, and shouldn't be repeated ever again.

BTW, These can go NIB to NOS like AW101s.


I don’t think he intended that statement as one of nationalist differences.

I think the big consideration to any future F-16 deal is that LM just doesn’t want/won’t develop it past their notional/disclosed plan (note: no need to guess on this) to locate “F-21” fighting falcon production there. They don’t want to sell USAF, or other western air forces more advanced F-16’s; the F-35 is their product pitch (outside, I assume, of some top up order opportunities from places like UAE etc). As such, they’d happily take some royalties and lower the cost to offer it to ‘other’ air forces via an Indian line. It’s a different situation for Lockheed, than Dassault, in essence. (Again, just my reading, not Ozair’s).

Theoretically, Lockheed selling India F-16 derivatives, as well as perhaps South American/Asian countries for instance, via an Indian production line might be more profitable than worrying about trade offsets keeping the (remaining) line in it’s present location. As for classified worries, anything about the F-16 that really mattered as such, was stolen by the Israeli’s (and shared with Chinese etc.) decades ago.
 
angad84
Posts: 2021
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:40 pm

dtw2hyd wrote:
Both LM and BDS already have a lot more Indian local production than Dassault.

You're confusing global sourcing with offsets. The two are not the same, although the latter can be rolled into the former (and it's usually good business sense to do so).

Incidentally, this distinction (sourcing vs offsets) is a major bone of contention, with Boeing spending billions buying from India, but still being hauled up by the Indian MoD for apparently NOT meeting offset obligations on existing contracts (P-8I onward).

The same, incidentally, is likely to happen with the Rafale deal, but not for the reason you flagged -- the bulk of the french offset package was to go into ToT programmes, but so far the big ticket stuff that would take care of huge chunks of the sizeable (ca. $4 billion) total offset obligation for the deal have not managed to get going. If they don't, then Dassault/Thales/MBDA/Safran et al (Rafale International, basically), will really have to scramble to avoid penalties.


Fun fact, the Sikorsky S-92 cabins that are sole-sourced from Tata in Hyderabad are NOT LINKED to any contract -- there are zero deals that Sikorsky has won with the MoD, yet the sourcing was set up years ago.
 
Ozair
Topic Author
Posts: 4264
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:33 pm

dtw2hyd wrote:
Ozair wrote:
...
My expectation is that any F-16 order by India involves the production line moving to India for any Indian and subsequent orders past those currently on the books for LM Greenville. Obviously there would be some transition period given Indian suppliers would have to pick up a significant quantity of the components production but local assembly is the political key for winning any large India deal.


Could you explain why a different set of rules for America?

The comment is in relation to the new fighter competition, where local assembly remains a key political issue. For the F-16 to win I believe that an offer for local manufacture, over and above simply kit assembled aircraft by a local partner, would be required. It remains a key political position as angad84 described.

As per the article in the first post,
in early 2018, the defence ministry issued a request for information (RFI) for 110 new fighters, essentially a reboot of MMRCA, with local production again a major element.

Interested parties are Lockheed Martin with the F-16V (rebadged as the F-21 for the competition), the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, Saab Gripen E/F, and Eurofighter Typhoon.


angad84 wrote:
The same, incidentally, is likely to happen with the Rafale deal, but not for the reason you flagged -- the bulk of the french offset package was to go into ToT programmes, but so far the big ticket stuff that would take care of huge chunks of the sizeable (ca. $4 billion) total offset obligation for the deal have not managed to get going. If they don't, then Dassault/Thales/MBDA/Safran et al (Rafale International, basically), will really have to scramble to avoid penalties.

I struggle to see a way that India will realistically penalise Dassault and associate companies for these. If Dassault etc are unable to deliver for me the end result is likely some future spares contracts at favourable rates to make the issue disappear.


angad84 wrote:
Fun fact, the Sikorsky S-92 cabins that are sole-sourced from Tata in Hyderabad are NOT LINKED to any contract -- there are zero deals that Sikorsky has won with the MoD, yet the sourcing was set up years ago.


Agree and an opposite example to that is the AH-64 fuselage being built in Hyperabad, with Tata and Boeing’s joint venture being the sole manufacturer of that part for all global deliveries and I asume an offset linked to Indian acquisition of the AH-64.

https://www.tata.com/newsroom/tata-boei ... t-fuselage


texl1649 wrote:

I don’t think he intended that statement as one of nationalist differences.

I think the big consideration to any future F-16 deal is that LM just doesn’t want/won’t develop it past their notional/disclosed plan (note: no need to guess on this) to locate “F-21” fighting falcon production there. They don’t want to sell USAF, or other western air forces more advanced F-16’s; the F-35 is their product pitch (outside, I assume, of some top up order opportunities from places like UAE etc). As such, they’d happily take some royalties and lower the cost to offer it to ‘other’ air forces via an Indian line. It’s a different situation for Lockheed, than Dassault, in essence. (Again, just my reading, not Ozair’s).

Thanks and yes that would probably be LM’s perspective and as I described above local manufacture being the pathway to win that looming 110 aircraft order. As we’ve seen with the Su-30MKI once you get in you can count on continued top up orders from India. Whoever wins that 110 aircraft and has a reasonably clear local manufacture (not just kit assembly and we can see how the MKI moved from kit to local manufacture) pathway forward should be confident of at least 50% additional orders and potentially 100%.
 
dtw2hyd
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Tue Oct 15, 2019 10:19 pm

angad84 wrote:
dtw2hyd wrote:
Both LM and BDS already have a lot more Indian local production than Dassault.

You're confusing global sourcing with offsets. The two are not the same, although the latter can be rolled into the former (and it's usually good business sense to do so).

Incidentally, this distinction (sourcing vs offsets) is a major bone of contention, with Boeing spending billions buying from India, but still being hauled up by the Indian MoD for apparently NOT meeting offset obligations on existing contracts (P-8I onward).

The same, incidentally, is likely to happen with the Rafale deal, but not for the reason you flagged -- the bulk of the french offset package was to go into ToT programmes, but so far the big ticket stuff that would take care of huge chunks of the sizeable (ca. $4 billion) total offset obligation for the deal have not managed to get going. If they don't, then Dassault/Thales/MBDA/Safran et al (Rafale International, basically), will really have to scramble to avoid penalties.


Fun fact, the Sikorsky S-92 cabins that are sole-sourced from Tata in Hyderabad are NOT LINKED to any contract -- there are zero deals that Sikorsky has won with the MoD, yet the sourcing was set up years ago.


Vendors not meeting offsets will be an ongoing contentious topic. CAG will callout vendors. But at least there are offset contracts to audit their compliance. Yes, Boeing, Airbus, and few other vendors claim they are investing a lot outside the scope of offsets. Where does Dassault stand on offset or sourcing? Nothing.

This could be a slippery slope. No defense vendor will agree to any technology transfer, offset or even non-binding local sourcing. They will ask the same sweetheart deal India signed with Dassault. Hence my hypothetical example of Mangoes as an offset for Texas built off-the-shelf F-16 variants. But apparently, the expectation is different, LM should move the FAL to India. Why?
 
Ozair
Topic Author
Posts: 4264
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Re: India accepts first Rafale

Wed Oct 16, 2019 12:01 am

dtw2hyd wrote:

This could be a slippery slope. No defense vendor will agree to any technology transfer, offset or even non-binding local sourcing.

Plenty have and will continue to. Will India inforce these agreements going forward to a different question.

dtw2hyd wrote:
They will ask the same sweetheart deal India signed with Dassault. Hence my hypothetical example of Mangoes as an offset for Texas built off-the-shelf F-16 variants. But apparently, the expectation is different, LM should move the FAL to India. Why?

LM isn’t the only one suggesting this, Boeing is also offering a similar arrangement although somewhat less defined,
Made For India; Made With India
In 2018, Boeing announced a partnership with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Mahindra Defence Systems (MDS) for manufacturing the Super Hornet in India for its armed forces, and pursuing the joint development of future technologies.
Boeing is prepared to bring its global scale and supply chain, its best-in-industry precision manufacturing processes, as well as the company’s unrivaled experience designing and optimizing aerospace production facilities to both expand India’s aerospace ecosystem and help realize the Make in India vision. The approach addresses the infrastructure, personnel training, and operational tools and techniques required to produce a next-gen fighter aircraft right here in India.
Boeing will work closely with Indian industry to ensure they have the very latest technologies, applying lessons learned from the current Super Hornet production line. Boeing has been working with suppliers in India for over two decades in manufacturing, IT and engineering services. Today, more than 160 suppliers provide parts and assemblies covering commodities such as aerostructures, wire harness, composites, forgings, avionics mission systems, and ground support equipment.
Future production of the Super Hornet in India, with Indian partners, will involve maximizing indigenous content and producing the F/A-18 in India for its armed forces, thereby creating a 21st century aerospace ecosystem.

https://www.boeing.co.in/products-and-s ... fa-18.page

The RFI continues to seek local manufacture of the aircraft,
After a flirtation with a single-engined fighter requirement, New Delhi elected to broaden the new competition to twin-engined fighters, resulting in a return by the same cast of contenders as with MMRCA. The RFI calls for roughly 80 single-seat and 30 twin-seat jets, with “15% aircraft in a flyaway state and the remaining 85% aircraft will have to be made in India by a strategic partner/Indian production agency.”

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... 11-459470/

Dassault has tried the local manufacture and would likely bid a similar engagement. I’m not familiar with what Eurofighter is planning. Gripen is offering local production.
Swedish defense firm Saab AB, which is seeking to sell its Gripen fighter jets to the Indian Air Force, said on Tuesday it could offer to make most of them in a production facility likely to be set up in one of the southern cities.
Saab is expected to face competition from rivals such as Boeing Co, Lockheed Martin Corp and Dassault Aviation SA to supply about 110 fighter jets to the Air Force, in what could be a deal worth more than $15 billion.
As part of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ push, Saab is considering locally manufacturing 96 of the 114 jets it wants to sell to the country, the Stockholm-based company officials told reporters on the sidelines of a conference ahead of “Aero India 2019” in Bengaluru.
Saab has tied up with resources conglomerate Adani Group to sell the single-engine planes to fulfill the condition of bidders having an Indian partner to be considered for the order.
Any manufacturing facility in the country could also become an export hub, Saab’s Indian unit Chairman and Managing Director Ola Rignell told Reuters at the conference.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-indi ... SKCN1Q81B7

Perhaps the thing that distinguishes LM and the F-16 is it really is at the end of its acquisition cycle and, as Tex1649 suggested, can see the potential of moving that manufacturing capability to India while it appears that other partners will maintain local assembly as well as an Indian production line.

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