IAF to issue RFI for Single Engine Combat Aircraft within October 2017http://www.indiastrategic.in/2017/10/05 ... ober-2017/
Notably, Lockheed Martin has tied up on its own with Tata Advanced Systems Ltd (TASL) and so has Saab with the Adani Group. After either or both are selected on technical parameters in flight trials, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) will approve the winner on the basis of commercial terms and how much Transfer of Technology (ToT) in sophisticated equipment accrues to India. According to IAF Deputy Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal R Nambiar, IAF expected the two companies to respond to the RFI in about three months, the flight trials should take about a year, the contract should be signed shortly thereafter, and the process should wrap up with deliveries of the first lot of flyaway aircraft in less than five years as of now. As the two companies have already tied up with their Indian partners, the process to set up the factory for the selected aircraft should begin soon after the winner is announced, and just as the winner completes the delivery of the flyaway aircraft, its production in India should also begin simultaneously.
- How is the MoD going to approve a winner on the basis of how much ToT in sophisticated equipment
comes to India? What is the criteria that the MoD uses to determine what is sophisticated equipment? Who in the MoD writes up these asinine requirements? Neither company is going to provide zilch and why should they? LM has already flatly refused and Saab - despite all the hot air - can't transfer nothing without Uncle Sam's approval. This is MMRCA redux all over again
Let us breakdown the timeline based on the above article.
1] The IAF plans to issue the RFI this month itself. LM and Saab are expected to respond to the RFI within three months. Let us assume that both companies respond by Dec 31, 2017 for argument's sake since it is still early October.
2] Flight trials are expected to take another year. So that takes it to the end of 2018.
3] The MoD expects the contract to signed shortly thereafter - which means endless negotations - but let's say that takes only a year. So now that takes us to the end of 2019 when the contract will be signed. Fingers Crossed
And if the Congress Party wins the 2019 General Elections and AK Antony comes back, hehehehehe
4] The first of the flyaway aircraft are expected to join the IAF roughly five years from that date. So now the end of 2024 for the delivery of the first of 18 flyaway aircraft. Hopefully!
5] Assume it then takes 1.5 years to deliver 18 flyaway aircraft and now we are in mid 2026.
6] Mid 2026 is roughly the same time production will commence in the Indian factory as per the article above.
7] Now as per LM's own admission, scaling up production will take time. Saab is surprisingly silent on that issue. So let's say it takes 12 months to roll out the first plane from the factory. So now expect the first screwdrivergiri plane to arrive at mid 2027
What is really tragic is hundreds and thousands (maybe millions) of our fellow countrymen will be starving for jobs for another 10 years because after all assembling these planes is meant to boost other sectors of the economy. Perhaps we should invite the United Way (or some other charitable organisation) to feed, clothe and house all the people who will be unemployed till 2027.
8] From that date, the factory has FIVE
years by Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa's own admission...that the IAF will reach a full strength of 42 squadrons. 2032 to be exact. And that claim is there in that above article also. So that means close to 20 aircraft per year to reach the magic number of 96 aircraft to be made in the factory. From two organizations - Tata or Adani - that has zero experience in screwdrivergiri, because that is what this will be.