After courting triumph with BPOs, India is perched to become an answer to the outsourcing hub for global aerospace companies. The Indian advantage being, 'the low-wage-high skills' engineers that it offers.
The fifth annual AERO India 2005 air show that ended on last Sunday at Yelahanka airbase in Karnataka, billed as the largest in South Asia, saw an increase in the number of deals between Indian and foreign aerospace firms. More than 240 civil and military aerospace firms from 31 countries attended the trade fair. The concluding theme of this year's event was the technology and knowledge capital that India offered to the global aerospace industry.
About AERO India 2005
The fifth AERO 2005 expo was held at Air Force Station Yelahanka, Bangalore. The exhibition is organised by the 'defence exhibition organisation' under the 'department of defence production and supplies' of the ministry of defence.
The Indian Air Force base at Yelahanka (AFSY) is a training base for pilots of IAF and the Indian Navy, but its infrastructure and facilities are used for this prestigious air show. Bangalore is fast becoming one of the major international hubs of the aviation and aerospace industry besides the IT sector.
Aerospace bigwigs like Boeing, Airbus, GE Aircraft Engines, Pratt & Whitney, Goodrich and Dunlop has 85 per cent of their turnover coming from oversees business. In 2003, India earned an estimated $2.3 billion from offshore business process outsourcing which was more than 80 per cent share of the global market, according to US-based analyst firm Gartner. The trend of outsourcing is definitely on an upward swing as international companies preen at the best offers in Indian IT market.
"Indian aerospace firms are internationally competitive and customer-oriented. As a result the first-tier suppliers look very promising," Edward Gordon, manager, offset programmes, Northrop Grumman, told the media. Northrop was at the show pitching for the sale of its Hawkeye, 'an airborne early warning, command and control aircraft', to India. "Some of companies such as Hindustan Aeronautics have come a long way," he added.
More than 1,400 companies have already set up base in Bangalore, India's technology capital, and international software companies are using India as a base for their outsourcing operations.
At the AERO India 2005, deals ranged from aircraft purchases made by Indian budget carriers with Airbus and Boeing to joint manufacture of missiles and engine parts.
Deals @ AERO India 2005
Joseph Ralston, former joint chief of staff of the US Air Force, was quoted by the media as saying that America sees the 'Indian defence sector not only as a market but also as a potential supplier and partner'.