Indian Air Force (IAF) chief, Air Chief Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria and Deputy Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Sandeep Singh for the first time have confirmed possibilities of IAF acquiring Embraer ERJ145 and Airbus A330 platforms from the Civilian Market, which are up for sale due to declining Commercial Airline industries due to Chinese virus situations worldwide.

The Indian Air Force (IAF) is also considering, for the first time, leasing aerial refueling tanker aircraft to extend the reach of its fighter jets instead of outright purchase and now, IAF is willing to procure assets owned by Commercial Aviation companies who are willing to sell them which can be later be Refurbished to military standards to be used for both Netra AEW&CS and AWACS India Programs to save cost on outright purchase.

Airbus A330 has been IAF’s Choice for both Next Generation aerial refueling tanker and AWACS program but it has been not cleared by the Finance ministry due to high outright purchase costs of the platform. Both Embraer ERJ145 and Airbus A330 platforms are commercially available jets which are on sale by Aviation companies for long term lease and outright sale. Many Airline companies have A330s which are barely 8 years old on average, up for sale with engines which still have plenty of life left in them at 30-40% cost on outright purchase of newly build ones.

With over 1500 Airbus A330 family being under production from 1992, It is not difficult to find engines and spares from Civilian market since commonality between Civilian and Military variant of Airbus A330 is over 85%. Many Companies offer conversion kits to convert civilian platforms into aerial refueling platforms.

Airbus is in into lease and selling of platforms developed by them and Just like car dealerships, the world’s dominant aircraft manufacturers sometimes offer to take back their old models when trying to persuade airlines to upgrade to the latest models, in the process help current customers to sell their aircraft to other prospective customers.

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