Commercial bids open for IAF's $11bn MMRCA tender

Dassaults RafaleNew Delhi: India's ministry of defence (MoD) opened commercial bids for 126 multi-billion dollar, medium range, multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) in the presence of the two competitors, European consortium EADS' division, Cassidian, and the French Dassault.

"The commercial bids for the MMRCA deal from the two competing firms were opened here in the presence of their representatives," a defence ministry official said.

Eurofighter launching a missileWhile EADS has its Eurofighter Typhoon jet on offer, the French Dassault, designers and manufacturers of the venerable Mirage series of fighters, have offered the Rafale.

The bids will now be assessed by officials to calculate the fly-away cost, life cycle cost, technology transfer cost and the offset offers before the winner of the contract will be known.

The four-year-long tendering process, one of the shortest on record, began in August 2007.

''The process to determine the lowest bidder (L1) will take between six to eight weeks,'' officials said, refusing to disclose per unit cost of each aircraft mentioned by the competitors in the documents.