AERO INDIA: Boeing eyes Indian defence boost

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India could potentially become Boeing's second biggest market after the USA in the defence and security business, as the company seeks to get a big slice of the country's growing military requirements.

Over the next 10 years, India represents a $31 billion market for its defence products over the next 10 years. This includes its offer of the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet for the medium multi-role combat aircraft competition, the C-17 transport, Apache and Chinook helicopters, and P-8I Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft.

The company also sees opportunities in the homeland security, unmanned systems, cybersecurity, space and services and support segment, says Mark Kronenberg, vice-president, international business development for Boeing Defense, Space and Security.

indian air force c-17, billypix
 © Billypix
Boeing's offer includes the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet for the MMRCA competition, the C-17 transport, Apache and Chinook helicopters, and P-8I Poseidon

"As Boeing's defence business expands internationally, especially in Asia, we are investing considerable effort and resources to be successful in our industrial engagement strategies," he adds. "India is a very integral part of our strategy, and we will continue to work with our Indian customers and the industry to meet our commitments."

On the commercial side, Boeing forecasts that the Indian market will be worth $130 billlion in the next 20 years. It will compete for this with the likes of Airbus and the various regional jet operators like Bombardier and Embraer.

Boeing adds that growing the India-US strategic partnership is also driving its business in India. The company has an offset commitment of $2.3 billion, which it says will spur technology development and job creation, and make India a key part of the global aerospace supply chain.

The company has partnerships with various Indian firms, with the likes of Hindustan Aeronautics, Bharat Electronics, the Tata Group's companies, and Larson & Toubro supplying components for various Boeing commercial and defence programmes. It hopes to increase the number of suppliers and the scope of work that they do as it wins more contracts, it adds.

Dinesh Keskar, president of Boeing India, says that the company's activities will also help the country to acquire the capabilities to develop its aerospace industry and increase the quality of its products. "This will strengthen India's focus in building aerospace products," he adds.