UK to Offer Eurofighters Should India Scrap Rafale Deal
15:20 12.03.2015(updated 15:38 12.03.2015)
UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said that the United Kingdom could offer Eurofighters to India if India's long-disputed deal to acquire French Rafale jets falls through.
NEW DELHI (Sputnik) – The United Kingdom is ready to offer Eurofighter aircraft if India's long-disputed deal to acquire French Rafale jets falls through, UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said Thursday.
British authorities are aware that the "deal with Dassault has not gone smoothly," Hammond said, adding that the United Kingdom sees this as an opportunity to offer Eurofighters if India opens an official competitive bidding.
Hammond, who is currently on a two-day trip to India, noted that he had not raised the issue with Indian authorities in the course of the ongoing meetings.
In 2012, India chose France's Dassault Aviation to supply it with 126 Rafale fighter jets, scrapping a rival proposal from the producers of the Eurofighter Typhoon.
However, the project has been put on hold over high costs and Dassault's unwillingness to guarantee the performance of Rafale aircraft produced in India under transfer of technology agreements.
The Eurofighter Typhoon is a multirole fighter aircraft jointly produced by three companies based in United Kingdom, Germany and Spain, and Italy.
Indian media have repeatedly suggested that the country's authorities could abandon the Rafale deal in favor of Russia-designed SU-30 fighters.
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