The Indian MoD has reportedly cleared payment of the first installment of the deal for 36 Rafale combat aircraft with France.
The payment amounting to 15% of the contract value, was cleared recently, an Indian defence website said. As per the contract, the French Government will deliver the first few aircraft within three years, probably in 2019.
India has requested France to speed the delivery to the extent possible, India Strategic reported today. The first instalment would amount to about 1.1 billion Euros.
The aircraft manufacturer Dassault had started working with its partners well in advance towards the Indian requirement, particularly as the Indian Air Force had asked for some specific modifications, Industry officials in Paris also said.
Dassault leads the consortium with Safran and Thales doing the engines and electronic systems and suites. Actually Safran and Thales have higher share each than Dasssault which designs, integrates and markets combat and civil aircraft.
The deal between India and France was formalized when Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and his French counterpart Jean Yves LeDrian signed the contract in Delhi in September this year. India will pay about 7.8 billion Euros for 36 off-the-shelf Dassault Rafale twin-engine fighters.