Make in India for M777 howitzer to take centrestage at DefExpo

New Delhi, March 16 (IANS) BAE Systems’ world-class, battle-proven M777 ultra lightweight howitzer, for which India and the United States are in discussions for a Foreign Military Sale for the Indian Army, will take centrestage at the company’s stand at the ninth edition of DefExpo, India’s premier land, naval and security exhibition in Goa later this month.

The company recently reaffirmed its commitment to Make in India by down-selecting Mahindra and Mahindra as its business partner for its proposed in-country assembly, integration and test facility, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

In addition to the M777, the company’s showcase will include the Archer 155 mm FH 77 BW L52 self-propelled howitzer along with a full spectrum of munitions spanning hyper velocity projectile, 81 mm mortar, 105 mm and 155 mm artillery ammunition, 120 mm tank ammunition and the 3P ammo.

Recognising the ever-increasing importance of cyberspace in the defence mix, BAE Systems will also be showcasing its cyber defence and intelligence capabilities “giving our experts the opportunity to engage with local sector participants and demonstrate our unique set of solutions, systems, experience and processes”, the statement said.

“These, combined with our Cyber Special Forces — some of the most skilled people in the world — enable us to defend against cyber attacks, fraud and financial crime, enable intelligence-led policing and solve complex data problems,” the statement added.

The Hawk advanced jet trainer (AJT), with 123 aircraft ordered to date by the Indian Air Force (106) and the Indian Navy (17), will also find prominence on the stand.

“DefExpo is a strategic platform for the company to demonstrate our commitment to partner India to Make in India. Our showcase curates a range of capabilities and equipment, every one of which has a Make in India vision. In particular, the show is an excellent platform for us to strengthen existing partnerships and activate new ones,” BAE managing director for India and South Asia John Brosnan said.

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