Saab will be meeting with Indian companies next month to discuss on building a foundation for Gripen development in India, reports Economic Times. "The industry evaluation tour will take place for 10 days in mid-October. A dozen Indian SMEs suitable for systems manufacturing will be met by a team consisting of different Saab companies, international system suppliers headed by members of the Gripen for India team," says Mats Palmberg, VP, Industrial Partnerships and Head of Gripen India Campaign.
In April 2016, the Indian Air Force issued a Request for Information (RFI) for the procurement of 110 fighter aircraft. Six companies including Saab responded to the RFI in July last year. The no-strings-attached deal that was made by Saab to India consisted an offer of 114 Gripen aircraft out of which 96 could be manufactured locally in the country.
Earlier this year, Saab had signed Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with three of India’s leading aerospace manufacturers- Dynamatic Technologies Limited, CIM Tools Private Limited, and Sansera Engineering Limited. "Some discussions have resulted in MoUs with a mutual intention to work together on a broader basis in defence and also in the execution phase of the Gripen E program in India," Palmberg adds.
According to a Bloomberg report, Saab has already conducted researches and surveys to acquire various parts for Gripen’s aerstructures. "We also have contracts with suppliers for machine and sheet metal parts. All these products are exported out of India for our commercial programs with Airbus and Boeing. We are actively working to increase and broaden sourcing from India to increase levels of volume as well as complexity," he says.
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