Rafale makers invite French SMEs to set up shop in India

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on January 09, 2018

The fighter jet Rafale made by Dassault   -  REUTERS

After securing a deal to sell 36 Rafale fighters jets to India, and not withstanding the political brouhaha that has erupted in its wake, Dassault Aviation is looking to attract and house an organic ecosystem of French SMEs in India. The aim is to secure its component manufacturing needs here.

France’s Centre Val de Loire Regional Council and Aerocentre invited the companies behind the development of the Rafale fighter jet, Dassault Aviation, Safran and Thales — which together make up Rafale International — to showcase and present to the SMEs in the region, how they are helping set up an industrial aeronautical sector in India.

Some 50-odd small businesses in France were present on the occasion. The companies spoke on how they would be contributing to ‘Make in India’ as part of the Rafale offset programme, even as they presented the many opportunities available for French SMEs to invest and set up production facilities in India.

Defining a roadmap for the French SMEs to help them join the Dassault Aviation, Safran and Thales global supply chain, the companies said the initiative would help bolster the industrial ecosystem already under way in India, and would benefit both French and Indian partners.

Meantime, components for the Dassault Falcon 2000s are also to be made in India from the first quarter of next year, when the joint venture Dassault Reliance Aerospace manufacturing facility opens up in Mihan, Nagpur.

After the facility gains expertise in manufacturing components for the Falcon 2000 jets, it could also expand capabilities to include final assembly of Rafale fighters.

Published on November 29, 2017

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