For the first time, Boeing responded directly to an Indian Naval Request for Proposal (RFP) to deliver 8 P-8A long-range maritime anti-submarine aircraft and invited India to be a “development partner” for the aircraft. Other than Boeing, another US Defense major Lockheed Martin had already responded to the Indian RFP.
India has also invited French Dassault and ATR Company, Brazilian Embraer, Russian Illuyshin, Tupolov, and Alenia
Boeing said that the US Navy, which was the prime contractor for the P-8A aircraft, was looking for a development partner and the company feels Indian Navy would be an ideal fit. Displaying growing Indo-US ties, this is the first time a US company is bidding for a defense contract directly and not through the US Government..
Air Chief Marshall S.P. Tyagi said that the Government has approved the Indian Air Force (IAF) to buy 6 six flight-filling aircraft, 80 medium-lift helicopters, 66 hawk advanced jet trainers, 3 airborne Air-borne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS), 45 medium transport aircraft to carry 15-20 tons, and 126 combat aircraft. While most of these orders will be filled by foreign vendors, the IAF is planning to induct a squadron of indigenously designed and built light combat aircraft (LCA), another squadron of advanced light helicopters (ALH), and intermediary jet trainers.