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SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG

With the buzz of Embraer reportedly in talks with the Indian airforce, offering the C-390 Millennium to reinforce the medium/heavy transport capability, Airbus Military has begun a quiet campaign and has hinted at the possibility of India being offered an A400M airlifter to the Indian Air Force (IAF).

Both Airbus Military and Embraer have plans to position the A400M and C-390 between Lockheed Martin C-130J Super Hercules and Boeing C-17 Globe masters fleet in IAF. State-owned HAL is also trying to squeeze in and is willing to work on an indigenous design for a tactical airlifter that can carry cargo in a range of 20-30tons.

idrw.org has been told that the void left by India after it walked out of the Indo-Russian Multi-role Transport Aircraft (MTA) program has been felt much more due to the botched-up An-32 upgrade program and now the Shelved upgrade plans for the IL-76 fleet. Airbus C-295 which was recently procured by IAF will not only replace Avro Hawker Siddeley HS748 but also older batches of An-32 that are nearing their airframe life.

Airbus Military and Embraer are keen to set up local production lines in India and to sweeten the deal are also willing to integrate much Indian navigation and communication system on the aircraft. Embraer 390 can carry a payload range between 19-23tons and A400 between 20-37 tons so both aircraft can’t be classified as in the same class but both offer the ability to operate from unpaved and short runways which has been a persistent interest to the IAF to reinforce forward bases across LAC and Eastern border with China.

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