New Delhi: Tata Advanced Systems Ltd, part of Tata group and Airbus Defence and Space, part of Europe’s EADS Group, have submitted a joint bid to deliver 56 transport planes for the Indian Air Force (IAF), the European planemaker said in a statement on Tuesday.

If the combine wins the contract, it will supply Airbus C295 planes to replace IAF’s Avro transport planes. While 16 planes will be delivered from the Airbus factory in flyaway condition, the remaining 40 will be manufactured in India by Tata Advanced Systems. This will include undertaking structural assembly, final aircraft assembly, systems integration and testing, and management of the indigenous supply chain, the Airbus statement said.

“The teaming follows a detailed industrial assessment and stringent evaluation of the Indian private aerospace sector by Airbus Defence and Space, which concluded with the selection of Tata Advanced Systems as the Indian Production Agency (IPA) exclusive partner for this prestigious programme," the statement said.

“The C295 is a superbly reliable and tough aircraft with outstanding economics which is proven in the most difficult operating conditions all over the world," said S. Ramadorai, chairman of Tata Advanced Systems. “It has already been ordered by 19 countries, many of which have placed repeat orders. And just this year, it has dominated the market with orders for no fewer than 20 aircraft from five countries," he added.

“We are extremely pleased to announce our partnership with Airbus Defence and Space for the Avro replacement programme for the Indian Air Force. It is a landmark for the development of aircraft manufacturing capability in India, now that Tata Advanced Systems is poised to take this step toward building entire aircraft in India. The selection of Tata Advanced Systems by Airbus demonstrates the confidence that has been built in our ability to undertake this complex programme," Ramadorai said.

“We firmly believe that, in the C295, we have clearly the best aircraft to replace the IAF Avro fleet and, in Tata Advanced Systems, we have secured the cream of the Indian private aerospace sector as our partner for this project," said Domingo Ureña Raso, executive vice-president, military aircraft, Airbus Defence and Space.

Airbus, which has €14 billion revenue, has 40,000 employees.

Tata Advanced Systems is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, focused on providing aerospace, defence and homeland security. It manufactures, or has tie-ups with, Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Pilatus Aircraft Ltd, Cobham Mission Equipment and RUAG Aviation.

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