February 20, 2015 Saurabh Joshi – Stratpost.com
Airbus Helicopters has initiated the process to get approval for a joint venture with an Indian partner to manufacture helicopters in India, with a majority stake held by the European company.
Airbus Helicopters is planning a joint venture for the production of helicopters with an Indian partner, which will have a majority stake controlled by the European company, formerly known as Eurocopter.
The company’s Vice President for Sales and Customer Relations in India, Rainer Farid, told StratPost at Aero India 2015 that they have ‘initiated the process’ for identifying and tying up with an Indian partner for the proposed JV before getting approval from the Indian government.
Farid says his company anticipates a requirement for more than 250 helicopters with both, the Indian Navy’s requirement for 123 Naval Multi Role Helicopters (NMRH) as well as a future Indian Army requirement for over 150 Tactical Transport Helicopter under the Long Term Integrated Perspective Plan. According to him, both these requirements could be met by Airbus Helicopters’ EC725.
The EC725 is a medium lift helicopter in the 11-ton class, which recently underwent Field Evaluation Trials (FET) for the Indian Coast Guard tender for 14 shore-based helicopters.
The NMRH requirement envisages Anti Submarine Warfare (ASW), Anti Surface Warfare (ASuW), Search and Rescue (SAR) and ELINT roles, as well as, special operations, while the army’s Tactical Transport Helicopter requirement would mostly be for transport in battlefield conditions with a larger cabin that could accommodate 25-28 troops.