HAL Executes Export Order For Chetak Helicopters To Suriname

Defcon 1

Senior Member
Nov 10, 2011
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The handover took place on the 7th of February 2013, during the Aero India 2013 Air show

This order for 3 of these helicopters were facilitated by a $13.4 million USD Line Of Credit that India had extended to the South American nation. This news was reported in the latest issue of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited's [HAL] newsletter, the state-owned company building these choppers under license from their French manufacturer, Aérospatiale.

"Adding yet another feather to its cap, HAL handed over two Chetak helicopters to Ministry of Defence, Republic of Suriname at a function held at HAL Stall on February 07, 2013. The handing over comes in line with HAL's agreement with Republic of Suriname to supply three Chetak helicopters.

Shri P. Soundara Rajan, Managing Director, Helicopter Complex, handed over the documents to Mr John Achong, Director of Defense, Republic of Suriname in the presence of Dr R. K. Tyagi, Chairman, HAL. Speaking on the occasion, Shri P. Soundara Rajan informed that HAL has been supplying helicopters to 10 countries and with this HAL has again left a global foot print. The Chairman said that HAL is committed to hand over the aircrafts and helicopters within the time period. Mr John Achong in his address said that the delivery of helicopters by HAL added further teeth to defence preparedness of Republic of Suriname."

As for some reports suggesting that HAL has also exported/is exporting 3 Dhruv helicopters to Suriname, I've certain doubts about the veracity of the news. As claimed, for Suriname's 3 chopper deal amounting to $15.3 million USD, per unit cost would come to $5.1 million USD. Compare that to the verified sale to Ecuador's of 7 Dhruvs for $51 million USD, which brings the unit cost to $7.28 million USD. A difference of more than $2 million USD between the two deals. These deals, compared to the ones India itself engages in during imports, are relatively basic in nature - a direct sale of equipment, along with support that involves training, maintenance & spares. Therefore, one cannot explain such significant difference between the two deals, involving the same platform. Moreover, a 2009 time for signing the contract for exporting the choppers would culminate in a delivery time of about now, perhaps delayed by a few months to coincide with Aero India.

In all likelihood, the country finally chose to acquire the single-engine Alouette III, instead of the twin engine Dhruv, that is also of a higher weight class, keeping in mind its own requirements & economics. Would want to be proven wrong on this count, though, and see some Dhruvs being exported to Suriname as part of a deal already signed. Nothing builds up good relations between two countries like the sale of military hardware.

HAL Executes Export Order For Chetak Helicopters To Suriname - Hands Over 2 Of The 3 Contracted - AA Me, IN

cobra commando

Tharki regiment
Senior Member
Oct 3, 2009
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Three Chetak helicopters for air force

PARAMARIBO – The air force since Friday has three helicopters at its disposal. The three HAL Chetak Helicopters were handed over by Indian ambassador to Suriname Mrs. M. Subashini, to Defense Minister Lamure Latour. "A memorable moment," said Latour as he reflected that it took seven years of negotiations to get the helicopters to Suriname and operational. He said that the aircraft will prove valuable in executing control and civil aviation support tasks. The helicopters were ordered in 2009 with a US$13.5 million price tag; the Indian Government had provided a US$16 million line of credit, but delivery was held up by financial and administrative obstacles. The helicopters, manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL India) were manufactured, inspected and tested in India, then taken apart and shipped to Suriname. Indian technicians came to Suriname and helped put them back together. They also provided training to the pilots of the Suriname air force. Current plans call for one Chetak to be based at Paramaribo's Zorg en Hoop airport, Nickerie's Majoor Henry Fernandes Airport and Albina Airstrip. Maintenance will be carried out by Indian ground support personnel, 8 of whom have been detached to Suriname. The HAL Chetak is a license- manufactured version of the 1960s-vintage Aérospatiale SA-316 Alouette III, a durable design especially suited for hot- and-high operations.
Three Chetak helicopters for air force - DevSur, Suriname news in English


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