Airbus unveils mix of procurement, ‘Make in India’ strategy

New Delhi, March 14 (IANS) The Airbus Group not just intends to top its target of $2 billion in total procurement from this country over five years by 2020, but also launch a series of measures under the “Make in India” programme, a top official said here on Monday.

Addressing a press conference, Pierre de Bausset, president and managing director, Airbus Group India, said the aerospace giant proposed to transfer the Panther’s assembly line to India and establish the country as a global hub for these choppers.

“Every commercial Airbus aircraft being produced today is partly made in India,” the executive said, adding that also on the cards was the proposal to establish a final assembly line for making Airbus’s fixed wing C295 aircraft for defence application.

Ashish Saraf, vice president for industry development, said the group’s “Make in India” strategy included establishing the country as a hub for complex and demanding global aerospace ecosystem, train medium firms to becoming Airbus suppliers and play matchmaker among its suppliers.

“The investments could exceed Rs.5,000 crores, resulting in the creation of over 10,000 jobs,” he said, adding the ecosystem that has been envisaged for the small and medium enterprises companies in India is to support the complete line of aircraft manufacturing, testing and delivery.

Xavier Hay, president of the chopper division for India, spoke about the partnership with Mahindra Defence for a joint venture company with the objective to become private strategic partners for the helicopter platforms.

He said a state-of-the-art industrial cluster was planned to locally produce Panthers, aimed at 110 Naval Utility Helicopters, the Fennecs for over 200 Reconnaissance and Surveillance choppers and Caracal for the foreseen 120-plus Naval Multi Role Helicopters.

“In combining best products & state of the art technologies, Mahindra Defence and Airbus Helicopters joint venture will set up a robust and efficient Indian helicopter industrial base if the three programmes become a reality,” Hay said.

The other benefits listed by him included transfer technologies from Airbus and its suppliers, ensuring self reliance and competitiveness of the Indian helicopter manufacturing ecosystem and enhance competence in life cycle management of helicopters with Indian companies.

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