36 Rafales Three Times More Costlier Than Under RFP

  • Pinaki Bhattacharya
  • 09:20 AM, May 8, 2015
  • 7067
36 Rafales Three Times More Costlier Than Under RFP
Dassault Rafale Fighter Aircraft Photo: Stephan Agostini/AFP

Even as the Indian inter-governmental committee is being formed to negotiate the purchase of 36 Dassault Rafale aircraft from France, information floating about the price is of the order $ 7 billion.

This works out to a per Rafale cost of $ 220 million, while informed sources say that negotiations under the 2007 Request for Proposal (RFP) was working out to be $ 70 million per aircraft including life cycle cost (LCC) at initially quoted price of $ 12 billion.

Of course, the manufacturers of Rafale, Dassault had been trying to raise the price, but the speculation is that the inter-governmental agreement will be a windfall for the French.

Further, the sources say, the air force is keen that an eventual arrangement will mirror the RFP process of 2007 in terms of various batches of the aircraft will be manufactured in India keeping in mind the ‘Make in India’ program.

The eventual number would be 126 Rafales, which the Service wanted at the beginning and will be built by Rafale, an Indian private sector and HAL.

Interestingly, there have been reports that the Mirage 2000 inter-governmental deal of 1982, under which the aircrafts  were eventually delivered and paid for by the Rajiv Gandhi government. will be the basis for the Rafale deal agreement.

This deal too, old-timers say, was extremely expensive, and the recent upgrades of the Mirage 2000 have been at a cost that matched the price of a spanking new fighter aircraft. So the scanner is now on the Rafale deal, how it goes under the Narendra Modi government. 

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