KUALA LUMPUR --- The Indian Air Force (IAF) has shelved its 11-year old collaborative Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) programme with Russia following enduring differences over its developmental cost and technological capabilities.
Senior Indian officials, including National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra, recently informed a visiting Russian ministerial delegation that India was withdrawing from the programme, official sources told Jane’s on 20 April.
The Indian officials are believed to have stated that the IAF could, at a later date, ‘revisit’ the FGFA project or alternatively acquire the fully developed platform once it had been inducted into the Russian Air Force, but did not elaborate.
Industry officials said the FGFA project, in which India’s state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) was the lead developmental agency, also did not feature in talks during Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s visit to Moscow in early April. (end of excerpt)
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