In view of the proposed Indian Air Force (IAF) contract for 110 fighter jets, Boeing entered a partnership with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Mahindra Defense Systems (MDS) to manufacture the F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets in India.
The Boeing Company is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Chicago that designs, manufactures, and sells airplanes, rotorcraft, rockets, and satellites worldwide. It was established in 1916. The company also provides leasing and product support services. Based on 2015 revenue, Boeing is among the largest global aircraft manufacturers. It is the second-largest defense contractor in the world and the largest exporter in the United States by dollar value.
Boeing’s portfolio of products and services, which are tailored to India’s requirements, includes the P-8I multi-mission maritime patrol aircraft, C-17 Globemaster III strategic lift airlifter, the heavy lift CH-47F Chinook helicopter, the combat-proven AH-64 Apache attack helicopter and weapons.
In January 2009, the Indian government entered a contract with Boeing Defense, Space & Security to purchase eight P-8I long-range maritime reconnaissance and antisubmarine aircraft. The P-8I, customized for India, is a variant of the US Navy’s P-8A Poseidon and offers India the full range of maritime surveillance and patrol missions.
In June 2011, India’s Ministry of Defense announced an agreement with the US government to acquire 10 Boeing C 17 Globemaster III airlifters. The agreement is known to be the largest defense contract signed between the Indian government and the United States.
India’s Ministry of Defense completed its order with Boeing for production, training, and support of Apache and Chinook helicopters which will support India’s potential across a variety of military and humanitarian missions. India is expected to obtain 22 AH-64E Apache attack helicopters and 15 CH-47F Chinook heavy-lift helicopters. In recent years, Boeing has been entering into partnerships with several companies in India to help boost its aerospace and defense industry.
Boeing entered into a partnership with India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Mahindra Defense Systems (MDS) to manufacture the F/A-18 Super Hornet for its armed forces. Boeing aims for this partnership to give opportunities for the joint development of technologies in the future. The partnership is expected to evolve India’s aerospace and defense ecosystem, as a part of its ‘Make in India’ initiative.
“Boeing is excited to team up with India’s only company that manufactures combat fighters, HAL, and Indian company that manufactures small commercial airplanes, Mahindra. This partnership brings the best of Indian public and private enterprises together in partnership with the world’s largest aerospace company, Boeing, to accelerate a contemporary 21st century ecosystem for aerospace & defense manufacturing in India,” said Pratyush Kumar, President, Boeing India.
“Hindustan Aeronautics Limited has always been at the forefront of aerospace development in India’s aerospace sector,” said T Suvarna Raju, Chairman and Managing Director, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. “This partnership with Boeing and Mahindra Defense Systems will create an opportunity to develop capabilities of the aerospace industry and strengthen indigenous platforms in India thereby contributing to the Make-in-India activities.”
Boeing’s production with its partners in India includes capitalizing on original material and producing the F/A-18 in India for its armed forces to provide a state-of-the-art aerospace ecosystem. The Super Hornet ‘Make in India’ proposal is expected to build a new production facility to be used for programs like India’s Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) program.
By signing this agreement, Boeing, HAL and MDS intend to bring in industry precision in manufacturing processes, and experience in designing and optimizing aerospace production facilities. This will help expand India’s aerospace ecosystem and help realize the Make in India vision.
The plan includes developing infrastructure, training of personnel, and operational tools and techniques used to build fighter aircrafts in India. Boeing will also work alongside India’s industry to make sure that the latest technology is available while applying lessons learned from the existing Super Hornet production line.
Our assessment is that Boeing’s partnership with HAL and Mahindra would optimize capabilities of India’s public and private sector. We believe that this collaboration would contribute to the growth of India’s aerospace ecosystem, especially in terms of manufacturing, skill development, innovation and engineering, and job creation. India’s armed forces are presently experiencing a shortage of fighter jets, and this deal with Boeing reaffirms India’s focus on avoiding a crisis. Additionally, this partnership brings out opportunities to contribute further to the ‘Make in India’ project for the aerospace and defense sector.