Hindustan Aeronautics Limited chairman R Madhavan recently said that HAL and IAF are close to sealing a final agreement on production of 83 upgraded Tejas Mk1A fighter jet and anticipating fresh order in near future, HAL is now augmenting its production capacity which can be rampped up to 24 jets per annum once Mk1A fighter jet goes into production.

Production capacity for the Tejas will be doubled from eight a year to 16 from next year onward when a second production line at the Aircraft Division (Bangalore Complex) will be ready but due to delays in placing of orders for Mk1A fighter jet yet, first flight is now been planned only in 2021-22 but to compensate for loss of time, HAL plans to use its underutilized Nashik facility to further argument its production capacity.

Nashik facility initially will have production capacity for 5 jets per annum which slowly will be ramped up to 8 jets per annum, Facility which has been used to manufacture Sukhoi-30MKI fighter jets locally in India is now underutilized due to lack of fresh orders for aircraft from IAF and is nearing previous order completion, which will lead to idling of the facility due to which facility will make space for production of Mk1A fighter jet and serve as third production line for LCA-Tejas aircraft .HAL recently received Request for Information (RFI) from Malaysia for the supply of 18 fighter jets will follow on orders for more 18 fighter jets due to a formal request from Malaysian Government, Two LCA-Tejas Mk1 aircraft were also dispatched for demonstration purposes to Malaysia recently.

HAL is confident that if HAL bags export orders from Malaysia or any other countries who have shown interest in procuring LCA-Tejas. Nashik Facility will come in handy to meet export order requirements and HAL will be able to deliver a customized product as per customer needs. HAL is also promoting Supersonic Omni Role Trainer Aircraft (SpORT), a lead-in-fighter trainer (LIFT) built on the Light Combat Aircraft Tejas platform to IAF and prospective International buyers.


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