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SOURCE: IDRW.ORG TEAM

After anxious months of waiting, India is finally set to receive its long-awaited delivery of F404-GE-IN20 engines for its indigenous Tejas fighter jets later this year. While initial projections placed the arrival date in August 2023, General Electric (GE) Aerospace CEO Amy Gowder recently confirmed a slight delay due to supply chain challenges faced during production restart after an 18-month hiatus.

Despite the setback, the news signals a critical step forward for India’s ambitious fighter program. The F404 engines are the heart of the Tejas Mk1A variant, and their arrival means production can resume full steam ahead. GE, committed to meeting India’s needs, has outlined a ramp-up plan targeting 20 engines per year, a significant increase from current production levels.

Looking ahead, the future seems even brighter. With India planning to order 97 additional Tejas Mk1A jets on top of the 83 already contracted, GE is preparing to further escalate production beyond 20 per year by 2026. This ambitious roadmap aligns perfectly with India’s plans to bolster its air defense capabilities and reduce dependence on foreign imports.

Delays are an unfortunate reality in complex manufacturing projects, and the supply chain disruptions of recent years have only accentuated this. However, GE’s swift response and commitment to addressing the issue demonstrate the resilience and adaptability of the partnership.

With the engine supply issue on track for resolution, the Tejas program can now focus on its true potential. As newer variants like the Tejas Mk2 and Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) take shape, India’s goal of self-reliance in fighter jet production draws closer.

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