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F16, Gripen - Make In India Single Engine Aircraft - News and possibilities

Discussion in 'Indian Air Force' started by Averageamerican, Sep 30, 2016.

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  1. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    AUGUST 2016

    After a long period of negotiations, spanning over a decade, India and the United States have signed the logistics pact on Monday during Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar’s visit to the U.S.

    The LEMOA pact

    LEMOA stands for Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA), a tweaked India-specific version of the Logistics Support Agreement (LSA), which the U.S. has with several countries it has close military to military cooperation. It is also one of the three foundational agreements — as referred to by the U.S.

    What are the foundational agreements?

    The three agreements — Logistics Support Agreement (LSA), Communications Interoperability and Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA) and Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo-spatial Cooperation (BECA) are referred to as the foundational agreements which the U.S. signs with countries with which it has close military ties.

    What are the foundational agreements for?

    They are meant to build basic ground work and promote interoperability between militaries by creating common standards and systems. They also guide sale and transfer of high-end technologies.

    What does signing LEMOA mean?

    LEMOA gives access, to both countries, to designated military facilities on either side for the purpose of refuelling and replenishment. India and the U.S. already hold large number of joint exercises during which payments are done each time, which is a long and tedious process.

    Under the new agreement, a mechanism will be instituted for book-keeping and payments and officials, who will act as nodal points of contact, will be designated on both sides.

    What areas does the agreement cover?

    The agreement will primarily cover four areas — port calls, joint exercises, training and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief. Any other requirement has to be agreed upon by both sides on a case-by-case basis.

    Will this mean stationing of U.S. troops in India?

    No, this is not a basing agreement. There will be no basing of the U.S. troops or assets on Indian soil. This is purely a logistical agreement. India can access the string of U.S. facilities across the globe for logistical support and the U.S., which operates in a big way in Asia-Pacific, will benefit from Indian facilities.
     
  2. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    The problem of international technology transfer to LDCs gains in special importance in the context of transition to sustainable development. It is a clear that multilateral agreements on IPRs, especially the TRIPS Agreement, are implicitly oriented to sustainable development due to postulating the balance between interests of public and interests of rights holders. Continuing discussions within global policy in the area of international technology transfer to LDCs will continue to concentrate on adapting the TRIPS provisions to new tasks of international development. These are done with regard to the potential use of Article 66.2 and other TRIPS mechanisms to facilitate the transfer of sustainable/clear technologies to LDCs. In the end, there should be wider discussions of these issues.

    Basically the US government can not hand over to any country the patents, and copyrights held by US corporations.

    developing countries, in whole, continue to depend on either spill overs or formal technology transfer from signed countries and their R&D centers.
     
  3. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    So in >2 years not a damn thing has changed, foundational agreements remain unsigned (no progress on them at all), ToT is not on the table and DTTI is still a joke with absolutely nothing worthwhile being offered under it.

    Also in the interim the engine issue has been largely resolved because the LCA MK.2 (for which the F414 is for) has been pushed back in favour of the Mk.1A coming sooner but it will have the F404 but the real kicker is the French have stepped in and are working on India's own baby (Kaveri) to put in the back of the LCA.

    Really leaves little scope for the F-16 to progress, it's unwanted by the user and the Govt of India and US Govt predictably just cannot see eye to eye. I say predictably because it seems that the US and India are always playing this game- India doesn't want to be treated as anything less than an equal and the US doesn't consider anyone its equal.

    And if these things looked implausible under Obama, under Trump with his "America first" (a direct challenge to Modi's "Make in India" ) policy and distractions at home it looks impossible. Trump hasn't even appointed an ambassador to India yet- that's how seriously he is treating the US-India relationship.


    There was a very very brief window of opportunity in mid to late 2016 to get the F-16 deal signed when all the stars seemed to align; Parrikar was DM, Obama was coming to the end of his presidency and the Rafale deal remained unsigned but literally all of these variables have changed now.
     
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  4. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Posted on BRF:

    Look at it this way - F 16 was the one aircraft with all its frills and fancies that IAF has spent the last few decades decoding, deconstructing and finding weaknesses. Now that it knows the weaknesses, IAF does not want it
     
  5. Averageamerican

    Averageamerican Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    India is not any thing special, they can sign the same agreements every one else signs that takes advantage of US technology. We spend billions on research and development and no one is going to get it for nothing to do with what ever they want.
     
  6. mugundhan

    mugundhan FULL MEMBER

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    @PARIKRAMA dumb question :
    Pak f16 are nuclear capable
    But why people say f16 offered to IAF will not?
     
  7. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Pakistanis say they are nuclear capable, has anyone actually validated this claim?

    There's not a chance in hell they are.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2017
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  8. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Well there is the flaw in your argument because India/Indians DO think it/they are and act accordingly:


    (^watch from 0:40- "it starts with the idea that India is unique", from the mouth of Teresita Schaffer, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Near East and South Asia at the U.S. Department of State)




    Anyway, a more recent article (than 2015) from the Diplomat highlights the challenge:


    A basic difficulty in transferring F-16 production to India is the myriad licenses needed on a technology-by-technology basis under current law. A similar difficulty would impede such other major joint undertakings. Among those that have been considered include those involving the F-18 for naval use, armed drones, or an aircraft carrier. This difficulty could be alleviated by legislation that would allow special comprehensive authorizations for “major projects” and “major programs” involving India. Such authorizations are now allowed for NATO countries plus Australia, Japan, and Sweden – but not India – under 22 CFR 126.4. Changes in the law could be combined with language specifically giving congressional impetus to the U.S.-India advanced F-16 or other such project. Such impetus may in turn lead to concluding the long-running negotiations for India and the United States to enter into the foundational agreements necessary for the flow of technology between the U.S. and India.



    ^ these are just the opinions of the author and not actually a roadmap that is being planned as far as we know. So basically the ONLY way India could get what it wants would be to get a special comprehensive authorisation from the US Congress, something hitherto only granted to major NATO allies and then maybe progress will be made on the signing of the foundational agreements.


    I mean, come on, it just isn't happening- neither leader's base (Modi's or Trump's) would be able to swallow the concessions needed to make it workable- Modi would have to give up "Make in India" or Trump "America First" for this deal, India would have to agree to restrictive end user agreements from a nation that has sanctioned India in living memory or the US would have to make special exemptions for a nation that is not a member of the NATO, not a member of NPT, takes an adversarial position to the US in pretty much every international body (WTO, UN, Paris climate accord) etc etc.

    And like I said, even the IAF isn't lobbying hard for these planes.
     
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  9. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    Why exactly? Nothing has changed, the tender still goes on as the article confirmed once again.

    So all they ruled out, was an immediate procurement that the media speculated on, because of the TATA LM agreement, but that was a non starter anyway, because the SE tender that the government wants, requires the selection of independent Indian SP and OEMs with out any JVs till the selection is done.
     
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  10. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    That depends on who will order more F16s. In Austria the news already is, "will our future fighters be build in India?" (They are considering F16 and Gripen as well).

    All current F16 orders will be done as planned in the US till the line closes. But diverting the production of spares and maintenace to TATA, even without new orders, would follow the Make in India goal and if countries decide to go for the block 70, even a production line could be set up.

    For TATA this is not different, then producing Sikorsky helicopter cabins, or Do228 structures for exports outide of India and doesn't have a relation to orders from Indian forces. But it obviously plays into LMs favour if such a production is already available and just needs to be expanded. Remember the IN MRMR tender, where they offered the Sea Herc? They also stated back than, that depending on the order size of Indian forces and the fact that TATA already has a production facility, a C130J production line could be set up in India.

    So TATA wins anyway, if they get spare production, or fighter deal afterwards.
     
  11. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    You are looking at it the wrong way! The simple fact that IAF has to lobby GoI that hard, to not buy the F16 is the real problem here, because it shows that IAF thinks there is a real chance for GoI to go for it.
    It should not be that difficult to make GoI understand, why an outdated fighter, that the enemy operates as well and that doesn't come with critical techs should be rejected. But the fact is, it's obviously not that simple and for whatever reasons, the GoI really seems to consider it, which is what worried me from the start.
     
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  12. mugundhan

    mugundhan FULL MEMBER

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    Thanks for clarification
     
  13. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Right and this is why the media jumping from TATA-LM JV to "India getting F-16" was absurd to begin with, anyone that has read the SPM will understand that the two processes are independant of one another.

    In fact, the forming of the TATA-LM JV may in fact be an admission that the SE jet deal is not going to happen as why would these two giants form a JV that very well may not even be relevent if, say, Adani/L&T are selected as the SP and SAAB selected as the OEM or even if it is LM, they would be forced to work with Adani or L&T making the TATA-LM JV all but redundant.

    Either TATA and LM are foolhardy (unlikely) or their JV is meaningless in terms of the SE jet deal, as you have pointed out- there is plenty of other business that TATA can/will with LM.
     
  14. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    True but I just think that is the IAF covering its bases, Modi is unlike any PM India has ever had and there is a big shake up going on, the IAF so used to the status quo wants to make sure the political establishment know the score.

    I don't see Modi forcing the IAF to accept the F-16, the pros just don't outweigh the cons, if the F-22 was on offer it would be a different story.

    Anyway as you've said above mate- no quick decsion is expected and that is the final nail in the SE jet "deal's" coffin- the entire point was to get them into service ASAP to protect against dwindling SQN strength, take away this key selling point and you are left with an outdated, very expensive plane you have already rejected that your enemy flies and that will come with little by way of know-how for your own projects.

    We can rule out any deal being signed in 2017 or 2018 then you have elections in 2019 so that is a write off also. The earliest a deal could be signed is 2020-1 however the Gripen E won't be ready for flight trails in India at that point but by then significant numbers of Rafales will be in service with the IAF and the MK.1A LCA should be maturing along with the Kaveri and Uttam projects.

    This will be another drawn out process that is killed off quietly many years down the line.
     
  15. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    Hehe, you understand the facts and still run into denial of the tender again.
    As explained, the agreement between TATA and LM is not SE related, but a save guard to divert (at least) F16 spare production and maintenance to India, after the US line is closed. It's aimed on foreign operators of the F16, independently of the Indian decision.

    TATA can still be selected as SP and if they have a production already running, it will make it easier for LM to point to fast delivery of fighters, than Saab if they have to team up with TATA first and get the whole bureaucracy started. That's why I said for some time now, that it will be interesting to see how the government guarantees no foul play between the SP and OEMs, that he had any kind of relations before. TATA has JVs with LM, Boeing or Airbus, so how is an unbiased joint proposal guaranteed with other OEMs?

    So even if the agreement is not related to the tender and the hype about a fast procurement of F16s was a hoax, it still can effect the outcome of the tender in the joint proposal stage.
     

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