ANI Photo | France submits bid for Indian tender to buy 26 Rafale-Marine fighter jets for aircraft carriers

In a significant development, France has submitted its response to India’s tender for buying 26 Rafale Marine jets for the Indian Navy’s aircraft carriers – INS Vikrant and INS Vikramaditya.
The response to India’s Letter of Acceptance has been submitted by France in New Delhi, defence sources told ANI.
A team of French government officials dealing with military sales to foreign countries has flown over from Paris to submit the response to Indian tender, they said.
The Indian side will carry out a detailed study of the French bid for the Indian deal including the commercial offer or price for the aircraft, along with other details of the contract, they said.
India will now negotiate the deal with French government officials, as it is a government-to-government contract.
The Navy Chief has directed the officials to ensure that the timeframe required for the project is squeezed significantly to ensure early finalisation and induction of the planes in the inventory.
More than a month ago, India delivered the Letter of Request to the French government. The LoR is like a tender document in which the Indian government has specified all its requirements and capabilities that it would want to have in the Rafale Marine aircraft being acquired for the aircraft carriers INS Vikrant and INS Vikramaditya, they said.
The Indian Navy and the Indian government are working in a fast-track mode to ensure that the acquisition contract is signed at the earliest and Indian carriers can operate the highly capable aircraft to ensure an edge for New Delhi in the Indian Ocean region.
The aircraft deal worth around Euro 5.5 billion was cleared by the Defence Acquisition Council just before the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to France as the state guest for their Bastille Day parade this year in July. As per the plans, the Indian Navy will get 22 single-seated Rafale Marine aircraft along with four trainer aircraft.

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