New Delhi. When Indian Ministry of Defence signed a £250 million ($428 million) contract with MBDA to equip the Jaguar strike aircraft which is under an upgrade, with ASRAAM short-range air-to-air missile, thinks seem to be moving just on the right track for the European missile major MBDA.
A long-term strategic partner, MBDA wants to be seen as an Indian player and not merely as a buyer-seller associate in India. For the first time the missile major has decided to produce a brand new product (SR-SAM) outside the European countries. From co-designing and co-developing, MBDA will also transfer the technology. It is strategically increasing its footprint in the Indian market keeping in mind India’s ever-increasing demand and a futuristic defence acquisition plan.
Milan MBDA’s close combat support weapon, which is used by armies around the world, is the missile which is manufactured under licence by BDL in India, a cooperation that goes back some 30 years and more.
Recognizing the need at platoon or company level for a precision weapon capable of striking a range of potentially time-sensitive ground targets when there might be an absence of readily available air-support, where man-in-the-loop control is required because of the complex nature of the battlefield and where the target might only make fleeting appearances before taking cover, India has issued an RFP (Request For Proposals) for a loitering munition. MBDA’s Fire Shadow is being considered for this need.