Washington: The US State Department on Friday decided to approve a possible Foreign Military Sale to India of the C-17 aircraft’s follow-on support at an estimated cost of USD 670 million, according to the Defence Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA).
“India needs this follow-on support to maintain its operational readiness and ability to provide Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HA/DR) assistance in the region. India will have no difficulty absorbing this support into its armed forces,” an official statement from the DSCA said.
The agency stated that India had requested to buy equipment for C-17 follow-on support, including spares and repair parts; support equipment; personnel training and training equipment; publications and technical documentation; support and test equipment; US government and contractor engineering, technical and logistical support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support.
The possible sale will strengthen the US-India strategic relationship. “(It will also) improve the mobility capabilities of a major defensive partner, which continues to be an important force for political stability, peace, and economic progress in the Indo-Pacific and South Asia region,” the US government agency added.
The agency delivered the required certification notifying the US Congress of this possible sale on July 26. However, the notification of the potential sale does mean the sale has been concluded.
“Implementation of this proposed sale will require the assignment of one US Government representative and 23 contractor representatives to India,” they stated.
Boeing’s C-17 is a massive long-haul military transport aircraft which can carry large equipment, supplies, and troops.