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Lockheed Martin, Tata announce F-16 India partnership

Benny Antony, Mumbai, DH News Service, Jun 19 2017, 19:03 IST
This F-16 production partnership between the world's largest defence contractor and India's premier industrial house provides India with the opportunity to produce, operate and export F-16 Block 70 aircraft, the newest and most advanced version of the world's most successful, combat-proven multi-role fighter, the release said. File photo

This F-16 production partnership between the world's largest defence contractor and India's premier industrial house provides India with the opportunity to produce, operate and export F-16 Block 70 aircraft, the newest and most advanced version of the world's most successful, combat-proven multi-role fighter, the release said. File photo

Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) has signed an agreement with Lockheed Martin to join hands to produce the F-16 Block 70 in India. The F-16 Block 70 is suited to meet the Indian Air Force's single-engine fighter needs and this US-Indian industry partnership directly supports India's initiative to develop private aerospace and defence manufacturing capacity in India, a release said.

This F-16 production partnership between the world's largest defence contractor and India's premier industrial house provides India with the opportunity to produce, operate and export F-16 Block 70 aircraft, the newest and most advanced version of the world's most successful, combat-proven multi-role fighter, the release said.

F-16 production in India supports thousands of Lockheed Martin and F-16 supplier jobs in the US, creates new manufacturing jobs in India, and positions Indian industry at the centre of the most extensive fighter aircraft supply ecosystem in the world, the release added.

"This agreement builds on the already established joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Tata and underscores the relationship and commitment between the two companies," Tata Sons chairman N Chandrasekaran said.

"Lockheed Martin is honoured to partner with Indian defence and aerospace leader Tata Advanced Systems on the F-16 programme. Our partnership significantly strengthens the F-16 'Make in India' offer, creates and maintains numerous new job opportunities in India and the US, and brings the world's most combat-proven multi-role fighter aircraft to India," Lockheed Martin Aeronautics executive vice president Orlando Carvalho said.

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