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Monday, March 09, 2015

India turns to FGFA as Rafale deal falters

Dassault RafaleIndia is now exploring as an alternative the stealth fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) from Russia as negotiations on Rafale fighter jet deal have run into rough weather recently, leading to delay in finalisation of the contract for supply of 126 fighter planes.

The main issue concerns the pricing, which is basically the production cost in India, and Dassault's reluctance to stand guarantee for the 108 fighters to be built by state-run HAL. Rafale was selected for the deal in 2012 but the final contract is yet to be signed.

French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian held talks in Febraury with his Indian counterpart Manohar Parrikar to salvage the multi-billion Rafale contract even as a deadlock continues to hold up the deal.

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