Sunday, September 12, 2010

Mega Defence Deals and Presidential Visits

There is nothing like mega arms deals to sweeten presidential visits. With Barack Obama, Nicolas Sarkozy and Dmitry Medvedev slated to visit India in quick succession in November-December; India is fast-tracking major defence contracts with US, France and Russia. So, if France is all set to get the over $2.1 billion Mirage-2000 fighter upgrade contract, India is likely to shell out over $6 billion to join the Russian Sukhoi T-50 PAK-FA fifth-generation fighter aircraft project. The Indian and US governments, in turn, are on course to finalize their biggest-ever defence contract for 10 C-17 Globemaster-III giant strategic airlift aircraft, which will come for upwards of $3 billion, under the American Foreign Military Sales programme.

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