Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) is seeking foreign partners to invest in its major programmes in an effort to overcome funding shortages caused by cuts in the Israeli defence budget.

The partners will get access to technology as newly developed systems are deployed. Recent and planned cuts in the Israeli defence budget are threatening the implementation of some development programmes and the acquisition of advanced defence systems by the Israeli defence forces.

IAI will not identify the programmes, but it is understood that they include unmanned air vehicles, satellites and new-generation shipborne surface-to-surface missile systems. IAI sources say negotiations are under way with several countries in an attempt to secure funds to kickstart the programmes. "We are talking about hundreds of millions of dollars," says one source.

Partners will be from countries with defence ties with Israel. These include India, Singapore, South Korea and Turkey, say the sources.

Source: Flight International