The United Kingdom is ready to offer Eurofighter aircraft if India scraps deal to acquire French Rafale jets, UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said Thursday.
British authorities are aware that the “deal with Dassault has not gone smoothly,” Hammond was quoted as saying by Sputnik News on Thursday. The UK sees this as an opportunity to offer Eurofighters if India opens an official competitive bidding, Hammond added.
The Eurofighter Typhoon is a multirole fighter aircraft jointly produced by three companies based in United Kingdom, Germany and Spain, and Italy.
Hammond is currently on a two-day trip to India. He said he has not raised the issue with Indian authorities in the course of the ongoing meetings.
India chose France’s Dassault Aviation in 2012 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.
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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