The negotiations for the Research and Development design contract with Russia for the Indian "perspective multi-role fighter", a variant of the Russian single-seat FGFA called Sukhoi T-50 or PAK-FA has been resolved, Indian Air Force (IAF) chief Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha said.
“The tortuous negotiations holding up the Indo-Russian Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) have been resolved,” Raha was quoted as saying by Business Standard Wednesday.
“The two sides are believed to have agreed on a $4-billion “R&D Contract” that could see HAL and Sukhoi co-develop and build up to 250 FGFAs for the IAF,” he added.
“[Earlier, the IAF] found gaps in information on transfer of technology; how they (Sukhoi) have achieved these 5th generation technologies, and in visibility of the total cost. So these issues were flagged… and now a lot of clarity has come on these issues. Hopefully things will be decided sooner rather than later on the FGFA,” Raha said.
The final R&D contract for the FGFA was on hold till now despite the two countries having first inked an inter-governmental agreement in 2007 and then following it up with a $295 million preliminary design contract in 2010.
Earlier reports had said New Delhi had proposed that instead of commencing the detailed project report(DPR), India would pay for three prototypes and transfer of technology (TOT) instead of US$6 billion for the DPR and joint production.
It is not clear if India wants to use the prototypes and TOT to set up its own production line in India. The FGFA, also called T-50, is the most advanced aircraft to be built in Russia. It combines stealth technology with super-manoeuvrability enabling it to penetrate deep into enemy territory and conduct bombing as well as dogfight with enemy planes.