India offers to set up production facilities for LCA Tejas and helicopters in Egypt

India has offered to set up production facilities for the manufacturing of light combat aircraft (LCA) as well as helicopters in Egypt as it pursues export opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa region.

A series of high-level engagements have taken place with the nation and the Egyptian Air Force chief is expected to visit India in a few days, during which expertise in manufacturing, as well as maintenance of aircraft fleet, will be showcased.

Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari visited Egypt in November 2021 and attended the Air Power Symposium and Defence Exposition in Cairo.

The delegation includes three Su30 MKI and two C17 aircraft.

At present, a 57-member Indian Air Force delegation is in Egypt to take part in a tactical leadership programme at the Air Force school in Cairo. The delegation includes three Su30 MKI and two C17 aircraft.

Sources said the Egyptian Air Force has a requirement of close to 70 light combat jets, with a focus on local production and technology transfer. At present, the nation operates a mixed fleet of US, French and Russian origin jets and has been keen on setting up aeronautical manufacturing facilities.

Besides the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Mk1A that is on offer to the nation, Indian manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited is also pitching its range of indigenous choppers like the Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) and the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) as well.

Besides the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Mk1A, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited is also pitching its range of indigenous choppers.

“Be it the fixed-wing requirement or the rotary-wing requirement, India is offering to jointly set up production facilities there. There is a significant demand in that region for such aircraft and Egypt will be a good base,” sources said.

The Indian LCA is priced at around USD 42 million per unit, a price made possible given economies of scale after the IAF placed an order for 83 fighter jets of the Mk1A variant.

As reported, India has emerged as the frontrunner for a Malaysian requirement of light combat aircraft, with a package deal on the table that would include maintenance and spares for the nation’s Russian-origin Su 30 fighter jets.

The offer to Egypt is the latest in the series of efforts by India, which is vigorously pursuing export deals for its Tejas fighter jet with countries in Southeast Asia, West Asia, and North Africa.

The Indian LCA is priced at around USD 42 million per unit, a price made possible given economies of scale after the IAF placed an order for 83 fighter jets of the Mk1A variant.

ALSO READ – India: Top contender for Malaysia’s fighter jet order

As reported earlier, Tejas MK-1A emerged as one of the final two contenders for Malaysia’s LCA contract besides the Turkish-made Hurjet. Also, Tejas is said to have an advantage over Hurjet because the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) is concerned about the procurement cost.

ALSO READ – HAL may delay delivery of LCA TEJAS – blames escalating composites price

HAL is expected to deliver the Tejas fighter jets to IAF from early 2024 onwards. The RMAF could become Tejas’s first overseas customer if HAL wins the contract, thereby only increasing the economics of scale for the company.

The LCA Tejas is a fly-by-wire (FBW) fighter with its Mark-1A variant having in-flight refuelling (IFR) capability that enables long-range missions.

India has offered a package deal on the table that would include maintenance and spares for the RMAF’s Russian-origin Su-30 fighter jets.

The LCA Tejas is a fly-by-wire (FBW) fighter with its Mark-1A variant having in-flight refuelling (IFR) capability that enables long-range missions. LCA Tejas is a fourth-generation fighter with supersonic speed, a 50,000-foot service ceiling, a glass cockpit, and a satellite-assisted inertial navigation system.

It has a wingspan of 8.20 meters, a length of 13.20 meters, and a height of 4.40 meters. The fighter jet can carry air-to-ground bombs and attack systems that can be used to strike targets on land or at sea.

ALSO READ – Tejas Mk II makes it to the list of top 4 light combat aircraft

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