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India to receive 107 commercial airplanes from Boeing

The 747-8 Freighter. A Boeing photo

BANGALORE (PTI): The Boeing Company would deliver 107 commercial airplanes to India out of which 37 will be 787 Dreamliner passenger jets, a top company official said Tuesday.

Boeing India president Dinesh Keskar, however, did not specify the timeline for delivery of the aircrafts. The project to deliver the commercial airlines is almost three years behind schedule.

Boeing's engagement with India has increased in parallel with the growth of strategic Indo-US relationship.

"The company's offset commitment of USD 2.3 billion is a catalyst to spur technology development and job creation, and to firmly establish India's industrial position in the international aerospace supply chain," Keskar, who is also Vice-President of Boeing International, said.

The other growth drivers were profit making Indian air carriers, growth of tier 2 and 3 airports and India becoming a key military spender, Keskar said.

Today's industry strategy is to develop aerospace capabilities common to commercial and defence sectors, develop SMEs to enhance the supply chain ecosystem, leverage technical strength in aerospace and enhance potential industry skill-set to build leadership, he said.

Boeing has 17 suppliers in India as against 10,000 worldwide, Keskar said.

In addition to offering the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet in the current medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) competition, other opportunities include C-17 Globemaster III, Apache, Chinook and P-81, Vice-President, International Business Development for Boeing Defense, Space & Security (BDS), Mark Kronenberg said.

Boeing also sees opportunities in the areas of homeland security, unmanned systems, cybersecurity, space and services and support.

Boeing is working with top India manufacturers including Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Bharat Electronics Limited, the Tata group, L&T to build several key components, Mark said.

It had increased its investment in training its partners in Lean manufacturing and programme management. Through its research and technology centre in Bangalore, Boeing was developing fundamental research in materials, avionics and aero structures in partnership with the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) and five universities in India.

The company plans to expand the number of suppliers -- both public and private sectors -- in India and insert capability where there were gaps, thereby broadening the base of indigenous capability and increasing global competitiveness of India's supply base, he said.

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