In a landmark announcement, GE Aerospace on Thursday said it has inked a pact with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to jointly produce fighter jet engines for Indian Air Force’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA)-Mk-II—Tejas.

The announcement came during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s first state visit to the US at the invitation of President Joe Biden.

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“The agreement includes the potential joint production of GE Aerospace’s F414 engines in India, and GE Aerospace continues to work with the US government to receive the necessary export authorisation for this," the US firm said in a statement here.

It described the Memorandum of Understanding with HAL as a “key element” in strengthening defence cooperation between India and the US.

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“This is a historic agreement made possible by our longstanding partnership with India and HAL,” said H Lawrence Culp Jr, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GE and CEO of GE Aerospace.