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India demands domestic production of fighter planes

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17:12 CEST+02:00
Should JAS Gripen win the race to build 126 fighter planes for the Indian Air Force, most of the planes would be slated for production in India rather than Linköping.

India wants 108 of the planes to be manufactured in India. The order is reported to be worth a total of 60 billion kronor ($9 billion).

Saab's head of communications Anders Florenius said that the unconditional demand represented both a challenge and the harsh realities of international business.

"Of course it would be great if things were like before, when we'd get an order and produce it in Linköping or Karlskoga. But that's not the way the market looks any more," he told Sydsvenskan.

Saab's Gripen is competing with a number of other aircraft for the largest order in the flight industry since the beginning of the 1990s.

India eventually intends buying a total of 300 fighter planes, with the initial order consisting of 126 aircraft.

Gripen's main competitors are the American F-16 and F/A-18 planes, France's Rafale, the Russian Mig-35 and the pan-European Eurofighter.

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