Negotiations have resumed for the Indo-Russian collaboration on fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) project that will eventually see Sukhoi T-50 (PAK-FA) fighter jets flying with Indian tricolour roundels.
The talks on the FGFA project had been in a logjam and now have been revived following the arrival of a high level Russian delegation in New Delhi, which will begin negotiations on two crucial deals â€“ the FGFA project and the production of Kamov 226T helicopters in India -- highly placed defence sources told PTI.
"We have got the clearance to restart the talks. Accordingly, a Russian team is here and cost negotiations began yesterday," said the sources.
India has already spent about $290 million onto the project towards the preliminary stage design. But the Indian Air Force (IAF) had some issues and it got delayed.
Previously, India was expected to pay $6 billion for three prototypes of Sukhoi T-50 (PAK FA) and the technological know-how, but following a new offer by the Russians, the Indian side is expected to pay $3.7 billion.
The FGFA project was inked in 2007. It is based on the Sukhoi T-50 aircraft under the Russian PAK-FA (Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation) programme that will challenge F-22 Raptor of the US.
The Russian side will also be holding talks with the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), which will be producing Kamov 226T, the light utility helicopters in the country under the "Make in India" initiative. The deal is estimated to be worth $1 billion, where the Indian Armed Forces will get 200 Kamov 226T. The Kamov 226T is expected to be the replacement for the Indian Army and Air Force's workhorse, Cheetah and Chetak helicopters.
The report also noted that India might increase the order of this twin-engined Russian utility helicopter from the current 200.