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Russia hints India could refloat MMRCA tender

First published: August 22, 2012, 10:46 AM IST | Updated: August 22, 2012
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Russia hints India could refloat MMRCA tender
Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Vyacheslav Dzirkaln indicated that Russia would bid again if the tender was refloated.

New Delhi: A senior Russian official has hinted that India could cancel the results of the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) tender and refloat it.

A report in the The Hindu newspaper quoted Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Vyacheslav Dzirkaln as saying that India and France had failed to reach agreement on crucial issues including technology transfer and financial terms.

Dzirkaln indicated that Russia would bid again if the tender was refloated. The Russian MiG-35 fighter had been eliminated in the early stages of the MMRCA competition.

French company Dassault Aviation's Rafale had won the $10.4 billion deal to supply 126 MMRCA to the Indian Air Force (IAF).

According to sources, Rafale won the multi-billion dollar deal as it was found to be similar to the French Mirage 2000 fighter jet, which is already being operated by the IAF.

Rafale beat the Eurofighter Typhoon to bag the deal. Rafale was preferred as its commercial bid was lower than Eurofighter Typhoon. The Eurofighter bid was backed by four partner nations - Germany, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom.

The IAF had invited bids from military aviation majors to supply 126 Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraf for which six contenders - Russia's MIG- 35, USA's F-16 Falcon (Lockheed Martin), F-18 Hornet (Boeing), Swedish Saab Gripen, European EADS EuroFighter Typhoon and Rafale.

Following lengthy field trials across the globe the Typhoon and Rafale were shortlisted while the rest were rejected as they failed to meet the technical qualifications specified by the IAF.

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