SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG
In a significant development for India’s defence and aerospace industry, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) which received a Letter of Interest (LoI) from Argentina last month on the procurement of Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) might eventually see a deal soon. The Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of HAL, CB Ananthakrishnan, confirmed in a recent interview that Argentina is looking to acquire approximately 16 to 20 units of the ALH, with the potential for even more in the pipeline at a later stage.
The Argentine Army Aviation and Air Force are reported to have combined requirements of nearly 50 ALH helicopters if the deal comes to fruition. This potential deal could mark a significant milestone in India’s defence exports, showcasing the country’s ability to provide high-quality indigenous defence solutions to international partners.
The ALH, also known as Dhruv, is a versatile multi-role helicopter that has been inducted into the Indian Armed Forces for over two decades. Over the years, HAL has manufactured nearly 300 units of the ALH, with ongoing orders indicating sustained demand for these helicopters in the domestic market.
One of the significant aspects of this potential deal is the opportunity for HAL to establish a local Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility in Argentina. Such a facility would not only service the ALH helicopters for the Argentine Armed Forces but also potentially cater to other countries in the region that may express interest in the ALH in the future. This move aligns with India’s broader objective of enhancing defence cooperation and engagement with friendly nations in various regions.
Furthermore, Argentina also has shown interest in the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), known as Prachand in the Indian context, which shares engines and other systems with the ALH. This commonality offers a strategic advantage for Argentina, as it could potentially explore the procurement of LCHs for its defence needs.
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