India has withdrawn from the Su-57 project, they now do not know how to get stealth fighter. And in China, 5th generation fighters are flying wildly, a painful slap for India.
Indian arms market: A delicious piece of cake …
India is currently one of the largest arms importers in the world, reaching tens of billions of dollars in the coming years, making foreign military contractors very lustful. Although India’s arms import market share in the world has declined in recent years, this South Asian country is still a good piece of cake for many major arms manufacturers around the world. The amount India plans to spend on arms purchases from abroad is greater than any other country in the world.
As of 2019, the budget of arms imports that India is expected to spend in the coming years has a total value in excess of $85 billion, much more than the “rich man” Saudi Arabia, which ranked second with a budget of only about $50 billion. It can be seen that the Indian market is leading with a huge gap compared to the rest.
… but the world military contractors were terrified, and Russia received the consequences
Among India’s major partners in the field of military technology include Russia. However, many Indian partners feel frustrated, upset or even frightened. Why is that? While the issue involves billions of dollars in contracts.
The reason is simple. India since the late 1990s has followed the principle of “diversifying arms supplies”. The principle originated in the 1999 Cargil War when a subsequent border conflict broke out between India and Pakistan. India had intended to concentrate its large military forces in Kashmir. However, there were certain problems, and Dehli hastily accused both foreign arms suppliers.
Among the companies that suffer the consequences of politicians and senior military officials who deliberately shirk responsibility, including Russia. And then a decision was made about “the more suppliers India has to choose, the better the situation in the military-technical market”.
India has been waiting for the increase in the number of foreign suppliers to create more competition, while its military will receive advanced equipment and technology. The number of companies supplying military equipment on the Indian market is indeed a very strong increase. But there have been discomforts mentioned above among these companies themselves.
The problem is that India is making more and more new requests. The review of proposals for arms procurement packages is often takes a long time. The procurement of more than 100 fighters for the Indian Air Force is a good example. The review of options, including the Su-35 and MiG-35 fighters, has taken more than 5 years and is still unknown when it will end.
Meanwhile, to fill the gap, the Indians “gritted their teeth” to order 36 French Rafale fighters, but finally realized that each fighter cost an unbelievable amount, nearly 200 million dollars.
With the above money, it is possible to buy nearly 3 Russian Su-35s with full weapons and not to spend money to re-equip infrastructure (including refueling planes), because India’s ground system knows Russia’s weapons well.
There was a time, the Swedes invited the Indian Air Force to buy JAS-39 Gripen. They were extremely annoyed when their buying partner kept changing conditions, to the point that the Swedish company SAAB announced that they would withdraw. Consequently, Sweden and the FMV agency have decided not to submit a response. However, after a while, Sweden decided to return to offer its most advanced JAS-39 Gripen fighters to the Indian market.
Lockheed Martin is also very upset right now, because India has recently announced that it will refuse to buy F-21 fighters (deep upgrade variant of F-16), which was built by the US military contractor and offered to the Indian Air Force separately. They even planned to open a plant on Indian territory. But New Dehli decided that, instead of buying the F-21, it needed to set up a production line for a series of locally developed LCA Tejas, and it was expected to order 83 more of them.
There were comments on European social networks claiming that all problems arising from military-technical contracts were due to India’s political rift. Put simply, every political force wants to “grab its share”, both economic and political. The result was a silent war, which the main manifestation is India’s uncertainty in signing any contract.
The selection takes too long, the request is too much. During implementation, the contract may incur additional terms. One such example is the contract for the fifth generation FGFA fighter program, which is expected to be jointly implemented by Russia and India. While several political groups advocated continued cooperation with Russia, to get the latest FGFA stealth fighter. Others have repeatedly stated the disadvantages of this program. Not to mention that the final option of the fighter at that time, in essence, was not available.
India has also withdrawn from the Su-57 project, and now it is impossible to decide how to get the fifth generation fighter. To produce by itself, it will cost tens of billions of dollars and years of hard work.
In China, the fifth generation fighter is flying wildly, it’s like a slap of pain for India’s arrogance.
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