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2000 - 140 Su-30MKI Licensed Production

Negotiations to license the production of the Su-30MKI to the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) works of India continued in 1997. The Indians received feasibility plans, and it was thought that a final decision would be reached quickly. Production in India would begin after 2001. In all, India might produce 100 warplanes in a contract worth more than $1 billion. However, as of mid-1999 negotiations on the contract for the licensed production of Su-30MKI fighter by HAL remained delayed due to the government crisis in India, which could not be resolved until after the Fall 1999 elections. The two sides had agreed on all the basic issues, including the value of the licensing contract.

In late December 2000, India and Russia agreed to the licensed production of the Su-30MKI, following the visit of President Vladimir Putin to India in October 2000. The deal signed in Irkutsk, where the factory manufacturing the Su-30s is located, was worth more than $3 billion, and provided for the production of 140 Su-30 fighters at Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) over a period of 20 years.

The General Contract was signed by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) with Russian Agency - Rosoboronexport on 20 December 2000 for license manufacture of 140 SU-30MKI aircraft. Collaboration is for the licensed production of 140 SU-30MKI aircraft along with additional engines and sets of aggregates to cater for the lifetime exploitation of the aircraft. The Russian side will provide for supply of license technical documents, specific non-standardised equipment and toolings based on the request for Indian side, technical assistance for preparation of Detailed Project Report (DPR), deputation of Russian Specialists to the project site, training of Indian engineers in Russia etc., and supply of technical kits in different stages of production. Once the DPR had been approved, the production of SU-30MKI aircraft in India was planned to commence during 2004-2005. One hundered and forty SU-30 MKI aircraft would be manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd under transfer of technology arrangement with Russia. The production of these 140 aircraft by HAL was planned to be completed by 2017-18.

The deal combined license production with full technology transfer and hence was called a 'Deep License'. The MKI production was planned to be done in four phases: Phase I, II, III and IV respectively. The original plan called for the MKI production to be complete by 2018. While Phase I would see complete aircraft shipped to India, and reassembled, Phase II would see MKI's manufactured from SKD (Semi Knocked Down) kits, whereas Phase III would have MKI's made from CKD (Completely Knocked Down) assemblies as well as Indian made aggregates. Phase IV would see MKI's made from local raw materials, with locally manufactured systems (upwards of 90%).

The first indigenously built Sukhoi SU-30MKI was inducted into the Air Force in March 2005. The aircraft assembled at Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Ozhar near Nashik rolled out in November 2004. It was the first of the 140 aircraft proposed to be built in India under Russian license.





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