Talks on for Rafale pact

officials say the final deal is unlikely to be concluded during French President Francois Hollande’s India visit due to differences over pricing.

Updated - September 23, 2016 02:36 am IST

Published - January 23, 2016 03:59 am IST - NEW DELHI

With French President François Hollande scheduled to arrive in India on January 24 as the chief guest for the Republic Day parade, India and France are holding hectic discussions to conclude the government- to-government (G-to-G) agreement for the direct purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets.

Speaking to the media in New Delhi on Friday, French Ambassador Francois Richier termed them “complex negotiations”, and said he was “hopeful” of an agreement.

However, officials say the final deal is unlikely to be concluded during the visit due to differences over pricing.

A senior government official said that efforts are on to reduce the price by 20 per cent. Currently the cost per aircraft is above Euro 100 million which translates to about Rs. 800 crore along with the weapons package. In comparison a Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft which India is assembling through technology transfer from Russia costs less than half, raising questions on the cost.

A French team of government and Dassault officials has been in Delhi for the last few days carrying out talks with their Indian counterparts. In addition, Dassualt CEO Eric Tripper and other French defence industry heads are accompanying Mr. Hollande to India.

Speaking in Paris last week, French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian hoped that the deal could be concluded during the visit.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.