Dassault aviation would rely on the assembly of Rafale exports to India to win the super MRCA-2 contract?

According to the Indian press, Dassault Aviation is considering assembling part of the Rafale of its international order book, in India. If the information is not confirmed to date, it would nonetheless make a lot of sense, by adorning the French offer for the MRCA-2 contract with trappings beyond the reach of its American, Russian or Europeans.

The visit of the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, to France last July, on the occasion of the July 14 celebrations, was an opportunity for Dassault Aviation to begin the final negotiations for an order of 26 Rafale M intended for the Indian Navy.

At the same time, Naval group did the same regarding the exercise of the option for three Scorpene submarines of the Kalvari class, which will be assembled in Goa to join the six ships already built and soon all in service within this same Indian navy.

Strategic cooperation under discussion between Paris and New Delhi

But these two contracts, already spectacular, could well represent only the tip of the iceberg, concerning Franco-Indian defense industrial and technological cooperation in the years to come.

Already, last July, several potential cooperations had been announced, notably in the field of combat aircraft turbojets, while New Delhi aims to develop two major aircraft in the years to come, the AMCA which will replace the Su-30MKI Indian Air Force, and the TEDBF to equip the future Indian CATOBAR aircraft carrier.

TEDBF india
Dassault Aviation and Safran are supposed to join the development of the Twin-engined Deck-based Fighter or TEDBF, the future Indian embarked fighter.

But other subjects had also leaked, particularly in the Indian press, in particular regarding French assistance concerning the national nuclear attack submarine program.

Thus, Naval group would have declared itself enthusiastic at the idea of ​​helping India to develop its own SSN, including through certain technology transfers, if New Delhi were to first order additional Scorpene submarines.

Even if the Indian press is deemed unreliable, often due to excess enthusiasm, the fact is that this order is well and truly underway, and that information around Franco-Indian cooperation around the Indian SSN program is being spread. more insistent every day.

The assembly of Rafale in India to win the MRCA-2 contract

Therefore, when this same source claims that Dassault would consider deploying an assembly site for the Rafale, to respond to orders which accumulate beyond the production capacities of the Mérignac site, attention must be paid to them.

Certainly, the information relayed by the Indian site may seem suspicious. Indeed, Dassault recently maintained that its assembly line could produce 3, even 4 Rafale per month, and that the difficulties encountered today came mainly from the subcontracting chain which was unable to find the necessary financing to follow the growth curve of aircraft sales.

However, such a communication and sales strategy would obviously make a lot of sense for Dassault Aviation which, beyond the 26 Rafale M currently under negotiation, targets in particular the 114 aircraft in the MRCA 2 competition.

Rafale in India
The Indian MRCA-2 contract concerns the local construction of 114 medium or light fighters to replace the IAF's Mig-21, Sepecat Jaguar and Mirage 2000 which will be withdrawn from service by 2030.

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