India asks Boeing for tanker bid
The government of India has asked Boeing to provide it with information about aerial refueling tankers, Dow Jones Newswires reports.
Last week, we noted that the Indian Finance Ministry had deep-sixed plans to acquire six Airbus KC-30 tankers for the country’s air force. At issue: a dispute between the Indian government financiers, who favored cheap Russian-built IL-78s, and the Defense Ministry, which would rather acquire more-capable aircraft. That has the armed forces starting all over again with a new round of bidding — something that sounds familiar to followers of the U.S. Air Force tanker bidding saga.
As part of this Indian do-over, government ministers have asked Boeing to provide information on what tankers it could supply, a company spokesman in India said. He promised “a detailed evaluation of the request for interest.” He did not put an estimate on the potential cost of such a deal.
India is looking for tankers to supplement its current fleet of six IL-78s. The country also wants to buy 10 C-17 military cargo jets from Boeing, and the company is bidding on a contract to supply India with as many as 126 fighter jets.
Boeing last week announced it had turned over to the Japanese air force the fourth of four KC-767 tankers it had previously ordered.
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