Global Defence Moderator
- Apr 20, 2009
India Opens 2nd Round Jet Trainer Buy to Competition
The induction of advanced jet trainers into India’s Air Force has been a long and difficult process. After a nuumber of false starts, and indigenous efforts like HAL’s Ajeet that didn’t quite live up to expectations, a 20-year procurement process came to an end when India selected BAE’s Hawk 115Y as its future advanced jet trainer in 2004. The 66-plane order was worth about $1.2 billion, and included options for another 40 aircraft. The first 24 Hawk Mk.132 AJTs have already been delivered by BAE; the other 42 would be license-manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics, Ltd. in India.
In March 2009, the Press Trust of India reported that India’s Air Force had elected not to pick up the follow-on option. In and of itself, that is not unusual. What is unusual, is a follow-on competition for advanced trainers thrown open to international firms, via a February 2009 RFP. Now, an article in India’s press sheds some light on issues with the current Hawk AJT contract, and the crtical state of India’s trainer fleet…