Boeing has confirmed that the US government has sanctioned its bid to promote its F-15EX Advanced Eagle combat aircraft to the Indian Air Force (IAF). This bid will be supported by a new industry initiative – announced by Boeing on 28 January – that will seek to develop in India an aerospace hub for Boeing military and commercial aircraft.
spokesperson for Boeing told Janes on 28 January that the US government “recently approved our licence to market the F-15EX to India”. Earlier, Ankur Kanaglekar, director for India Fighters Lead at Boeing Defense, Space & Security, was reported by Reuters as saying that discussions about the F-15EX had taken place between the governments of India and the United States.
Kanaglekar said that the F-15EX marketing licence “allows us to talk to the Indian Air Force directly about the capability of the fighter”. He added that Boeing had “started [discussions] in a small way” and that talks were expected to continue at the Aero India show in Bangalore, which commences on 3 February.
At a pre-show press conference in New Delhi, the corporation also unveiled plans to launch in India an aerospace project dubbed the Boeing India Repair Development and Sustainment (BIRDS) hub initiative. Boeing said that the BIRDS initiative “envisions a competitive MRO [maintenance, repair and overhaul] ecosystem for engineering, maintenance, skilling, repair and sustainment services of defence and commercial aircraft in India”. It added that the project is part of its “commitment to supporting and strengthening indigenous aerospace and defence capabilities in the country”.