Deliveries of Russian Kamov KA-226T helicopters to start soon

Deliveries of Russian Kamov KA-226T helicopters to start soon
Written by Shubham Jain

Deliveries of Russian Kamov KA-226 helicopters is expected to start after two years of the final contract. India is buying these helicopters from Russia. An official of Russian state-run firm Rostec has said that a Joint Venture has now been formed by India and Russia and the helicopters will subsequently be made in India. Russian Kamov Ka-226 are light utility helicopters. The Russian Kamov helicopters which will be made in India will cost more than 2.5 times than the original cost.

CEO of Rostec Corporation Sergey Chemezov said the Russian side is awaiting a request from the Indian Defence Ministry and negotiations on the Joint Venture are on. He said that project can be delayed as Russia is ready to collaborate with private firms for the project and a decision on this rests with India.

Chemezov said that the project is expected to be based in Bengaluru. Chemezov said that Russia has established a Joint Venture in India, and they are expecting to have an official request from the Ministry of Defence of India, the first deliveries if the helicopters will be made in two years after the contract is being signed.

Chemezov said Rostec is also ready to involve Indian private firms in the project, but expressed concern that it could lead to delays in the implementation. It is possible to engage other companies, including private ones, within the implementation of the joint project of HAL and Rostec, depending on the Indian party.

“They have to evaluate and affirm the readiness and reliability of private companies for most of which it is a new business domain. Rostec has no issues in collaborating with private companies, but the Russian state run firm also understands that engaging other partners in the project can delay the project deadline and make the project implementation more difficult,” he said.

Russia and India, during the bilateral summit in Moscow in December 2015, signed an intergovernmental agreement for implementation of the project for production of Ka-226T helicopters in India. During the bilateral summit held in Goa in October last year, the parties signed a Partner Agreement and ratified the Memorandum and Articles of Association of the new Joint Venture, which was announced on the sidelines of the BRICS summit.

The Russian side has 49.5 per cent share, while India has 50.5 per cent stake in the Joint Venture. Russian President Vladimir Putin gave his nod to the project in April this year, and it was registered in India in May this year. India will now have to make a request to Russia for the helicopters, and a final contract would then be signed.

The final contract will have exact details of the number of helicopters which are to be supplied in the knock-down kits, the extent of technology transfer and details of choppers which are to be made by the joint company. The name of the other partner firm and the name of the joint venture firm will also be revealed in the final contract. According to Rostec, 160 helicopters will be produced in India with different localisation degrees and the minimum project volumes are the procurement of 40 helicopters from Russia.

“Rostec’s strategy is to further expand cooperation with Indian manufacturers in compliance with the ‘Make in India’ policy proclaimed by the Government of Prime Minister Modi,” Chemezov added. He also siad that the partner Indian firm, HAL has a “significant experience in the transfer of Russian technologies to India.

“We expect that the target location to implement the project will be in Bangalore on the production capacities of HAL that are currently used in the assembly project of Su-30 MKI. There are all necessary conditions, including human resources for successful project implementation,” he said.

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Shubham Jain