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MMRCA deal: Bids to open on November 4

The Eurofighter Typhoon and French Rafale fighters in contention for India's MMRCA deal.

NEW DELHI (PTI): The Indian Defence Ministry has invited Eurofighter and Dassault Rafale - the two shortlisted vendors in the multi-billion dollar combat aircraft deal - on November 4 to open their commercial bids after which a final decision on giving the contract will be taken.

The two shortlisted vendors have received a letter from the Ministry and have been informed that commercial bids for procuring 126 Multi-role Combat Aircraft (M-MRCA) tender will be opened on November 4, industry sources told PTI here.

After the bids are opened, the Defence Ministry will be able to determine the lowest bidder in the deal and decide who will ultimately get the contract, described as the "mother of all deals", they said.

As per Indian rules, the lowest bidder in a deal meeting all the specified requirements is considered to be the winner.

The Defence Ministry had earlier this month cleared the way for opening commercial bids of Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon by approving their offset proposals.

Defence Ministry officials said all the spade work for the opening of bids was over and the bids will be opened in the presence of the two vendors.

Eurofighter and Rafale were shortlisted for tender after four companies including American Lockheed Martin and Boeing, Russian MiG 35 and Swedish Saab Gripen were ousted from the race in April.

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