Lockheed Martin looking for tie-ups with Indian companies

"We have been interacting with local industry here, both in public and the private sector. We are looking forward to explore the possibilities of potential partnerships," Lockheed Martin India Private Ltd Senior Director Jagmohan Singh told reporters on the sidelines of a defence and aerospace exhibition that began here.

He said initially the company is looking for production of anti-tank guided missiles, and added "We are hoping to move forward particularly in this (anti-tank guided missiles) area provided we get clearances from the US and the Indian government."

"We have sought the approval of the US government and hopeful of receiving it soon. After getting a go ahead from Indian government, we will start working with local companies to get the production facilities here," Singh said.

He informed the company was already in talks with local defence industries including Bharat Dynamics Ltd and many other private companies.

"These talks are at initial stages. Our focus in Hyderabad has been on partnering for various kinds of missile production and we have been associating ourselves with local industry and Bharat Dynamics on setting up industrial processes."

Jagmohan Singh claimed that defence forces in India would be benefited by a range of technology solutions the company possesses and said "if given a chance we will associate ourselves with the local industry and try to set up production facilities in Hyderabad, Bangalore or Chennai."

"Many foreign defence companies are looking for partnerships with local partners in aircrafts, helicopters, missiles, radars, ship building programme among others so that they can offer requisite solutions to the customers here and we are doing the same thing," he said.

Reacting to a query on a recent report that Pakistan was planning to go in for more F-16s, Singh said the F-16IN Super Viper aircraft being offered to India was 'much more advanced'.

"This (F-16IN Super Viper aircraft) solution is different and is state-of-the art and is much more advanced when compared (to fighters provided to Pakistan)", he said.

Incidentally, Lockheed Martin, is among the six global majors, fighting it out for the IAF's bid to buy 126 fighters under the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA), which is estimated at USD 10.2 billion. The contract is expected to be awarded to one of the six contenders by September this year.

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