AgustaWestland has sought release of payment from the Indian MoD on grounds that it is performing its part of the contract in the supply of 12 VVIP helicopters to India. In separate communications to the Indian MoD and the External Affairs ministry, the company has invoked the performance clause in the contract.
The Indian MoD had suspended payments to the Anglo-Italian company following the discovery of a bribery trial by India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the Euro 500 million deal. Approximately 10% of the value of deal was allegedly paid to agents in Switzerland and the U.K. to bribe Indian officials for swinging the deal in AgustaWestland’s favor.
Informed sources told Defenseworld.net that the communication contends that AgustaWestland had already supplied three helicopters; three more were awaiting delivery while the remaining six were being manufactured in the U.K. as per the contract schedule. Not taking delivery of the manufactured choppers would render them inoperable incurring additional costs.
The Indian MoD on its part has put the deal on hold meaning no further deliveries will be accepted nor payments made until the CBI completes its probe and files a charge-sheet against the guilty. If the Anglo-Italian company is found to be complicit, the MoD may invoke a clause in the agreement to cancel the deal altogether and ban the company from doing business with in India for 10 years.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) which is operating three VVIP helicopters was faced with a situation of not having sufficient spares to keep the three choppers flying. However, this situation was resolved with the release of spare from the stock already with India. However this could prove to be a problem if no further spares are ordered.
Meanwhile all eyes will be on the 'instant trial' beginning June 19 against ex-CEO of the Italian state-controlled defence giant Finmeccanica Giuseppe Orsi and the CEO of its helicopter unit Agusta Westland Bruno Spagnoli for allegedly paying kickbacks in the Indian VVIP chopper deal. The Indian government is unlikely to initiate further action until the trial in Italy is completed.
AgustaWestland had already washed its hands off the duo by appointing a new CEO and setting up an “oversights committee”, to improve internal audit. It could use this move to argue before the Indian MoD that it has put its house in order.
India's Defence Minister AK Antony has officially announced the scrapping of a VVIP chopper contract, with effect from 1st January, 2014 on grounds that the Anglo-Italian firm AgustaWestland has breached the provisions of the Pre-contract Integrity Pact. Antony stated in a letter to Rajya Sabha that subsequent to the termination of the contract, two Bank Guarantees amounting to $38 Million approximate have been encashed
India has picked Russian Helicopters to supply 12 VVIP choppers to be used to transport high profile leaders, the Rostec state corporation said in a press release. The Mi-17V-5 helicopter was chosen by the countrys Special Protection Group (of the 150 helicopters already delivered to India) for escorting the most important politicians in India during the election season
The Indian government is seeking repayments worth some $367 million from the troubled Italian firm AgustaWestland over a scrapped helicopter deal. India last week cancelled a $770 million deal with AgustaWestland for 12 AW101 helicopters over what it termed a breach of integrity relating to alleged corruption
As the possibility of blacklisting by the Indian government looms over AgustaWestland following the termination of the VVIP helicopter deal, its participation in various other military tenders worth an estimated $3.5 billion also hang in the balance
AgustaWestland has confirmed that it received a termination notice from the Indian Ministry of Defence yesterday on the VVIP chopper deal, along with a notification concerning an appointment of an arbitrator from its side, as requested on November 25 and December 4, 2013. AgustaWestland claims that the contract termination notice by the Indian Ministry of Defence doesnt offer adequate basis to take any action against the Company
The Indian government has finally ended the Rs 3,546-crore VVIP chopper deal on the grounds that Anglo-Italian firm AgustaWestland had breached the integrity pact by allegedly paying several million euros in bribes. The formal announcement was made yesterday when Defence Minister A K Antony met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to discuss further development in the case
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