Air India One for Indian PM Will Be a Boeing 777-300

Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, will soon get a new Air India One aircraft for official purposes. According to exclusive details available with Aaj Tak, the aircraft will be similar to President Obama’s Air Force One. Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar will finalize the deal for two new Boeing 777-300s during the Defense Acquisition Council meeting to be held on June 25.

Boeing 777-300

DNA reports that the plane will be fitted with the latest technology and security features. It will be able to withstand grenade and rocket attacks and dodge and jam enemy radars. It also has air-air refueling facilities in case of an emergency. Its defense systems include radar warning receivers and missile-approach warning systems. It can store food for 2,000 people. The plane is equipped with an operating theater for emergency surgery.  It has 19 TV sets, broadband, radio, telecom connections and a number of tools for official work.

 

June 23, 2016   No Comments

U.S. and India to Provide Logistics Support to Each Other for Defense Purposes

During U.S. defense secretary Ashton Carter’s recent visit to India, in a joint press conference along with India’s  defense minister Manohar Parrikar it was agreed “in principle” to conclude a defense agreement that involves providing each other’s militaries with logistic support covering fuel, spares and repairs on a reimbursable or barter basis.

Carter and Parrikar reaffirmed their desire to expeditiously conclude a “white shipping” technical arrangement to improve data sharing on commercial shipping traffic and agreed to commence navy-to-navy discussions on submarine safety and anti-submarine warfare, reports Defense World. 60 per cent of the U.S. fleet will be in the Pacific-Indian Ocean area, the U.S. Department of Defense said in a statement.

Because the Indian peninsula is situated in a crucial sea-link between the Middle East and south-east Asia, a substantial number of U.S. naval ships and submarines transit through Indian ports which stand to gain more revenue.

 International Container Transshipment Terminal in Kochi, India

International Container Transshipment Terminal in Kochi, India

Carter and Parrikar reaffirmed the importance of safeguarding maritime security and ensuring freedom of navigation and overflight throughout the region, including in the South China Sea.

April 27, 2016   No Comments

India Releases New Defense Procurement Procedure

India’s Minister for Defense, Manohar Parrikar released the latest Defense Procurement Procedure (DPP) which seeks to simplify and speed-up defense purchases. Parrikar said the new policy “will boost the Make in India initiative, and will come in to effect from April 1.”

Manohar Parrikar

(DPP) 2016 is geared toward partnership with Indian defense companies and not just purchase of weapons. It seeks to give top priority to a new category of procurement known as Indigenous Design, Development and Manufacturing (IDDM). Products bought under this category would require 40 percent domestic content if the design of the product is also domestic; else, it will require 60 percent domestic content, reports Defense News.

The priority to acquiring weapons will be given in the following order:

  • Buy (Indian — IDDM)
  • Buy (Indian)
  • Buy and Make (Indian)
  • Buy and Make (Global)
  • Buy (Global) category

In another change, foreign companies will now have to transfer technology for providing maintenance infrastructure, even under the category Buy (Global).

The new DPP has increased the bar for fulfilling mandatory defense offsets by overseas companies. Now, mandatory offsets will be discharged by overseas defense companies only when the contract is over $296 million compared to the existing level of $45 million — a relief to overseas defense companies.

Talking to reporters, Parrikar said the policy to allow private-sector defense companies as strategic partners for big ticket defense projects is likely to be cleared by the government in the next three months.

March 30, 2016   No Comments

India’s Defense Acquisition Council Approves Major Policy Changes

India’s Defense Acquisition Council, the top decision-making body of the Defense Ministry, has approved major policy changes that include increased offset baselines, reduced delays in procedures, and emphasis on local production.

Accordingly, in the new Defense Procurement Policy, threshold  contract value for which offsets are mandatory has been revised from the earlier $46 million  to $320 million.

Delays in procurement will be reduced by eliminating repetitive procedures. Certain procurements will be allowed in case of single vendor situations with proper justifications. Earlier, no purchase order  was issued if there was only a single vendor bidding for any project.

The Defense Ministry clarified that representatives who are on the payroll of a defense firm should not be called agents. It defines agents as those whose income/remuneration is dependent on whether they are able to win the contract. “The representative should be paid a reasonable fee…he should not be a commission agent or be paid depending on the cost of a deal or the success or failure of the deal,” Minister for Defense Manohar Parrikar said.

Minister for Defense, Manohar Parrikar

Minister for Defense, Manohar Parrikar

The new Defense Procurement Policy also includes guidelines for the government to enter into strategic partnerships with private sector companies in six critical areas, ranging from aircraft and warships to tanks and guided missile systems, reports Defense World.

January 17, 2016   No Comments

U.S. Updates Technology Transfer Policy with India

One of the results of the meetings between U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter and India’s Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar earlier this month was that the U.S. has updated its policy on gas-turbine engine technology transfer to India to expand cooperation in production and design of sensitive jet engine components.

Carter and Parrikar

Defense leaders A. Carter and M.  Parrikar

Carter said he and Parrikar discussed the progress that has been made towards cooperation on jet engines, and aircraft carrier design and construction, as well as opportunities to collaborate on additional projects of interest, which will also further Prime Minister Modi‘s Make in India policy, reports Economic Times.

Carter and Parrikar look forward to U.S. companies working with their Indian counterparts to submit transfer requests that will benefit from this updated policy, said a joint statement issued after a meeting between two leaders at the Pentagon.

December 23, 2015   No Comments