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Dassault to field the Rafale for India''s MRCA tendernews
31 October 2007

Paris: Dassault Aviation has confirmed that it would compete in India''s tender for 126 medium range multi role combat aircraft (MRCA), confirming earlier media reports that the French aerospace giant would put up the Rafale fighter as its candidate.

"We will respond to the request for proposals," a Dassault spokesman said.

Currently, the Rafale is the only combat aircraft in production with Dassault, as earlier it had shut down the production lines for the Mirage 2000 after the delivery of the last orders to Greece.

For reasons that are not clear Dassault had hesitated before committing itself to the MRCA competition and according to some reports had sought guidance from the French government on the issue.

Dassault had earlier withdrawn from an Indian competition for jet trainers over cost issues, said Dassault chief executive Charles Edelstenne. The contract eventually went to BAE Systems'' Hawk AJT.

India has issued request for proposals (RFPs) to Boeing and Lockheed Martin along with the Russian MiG RAC, the Swedish Saab and the four-country Eurofighter consortium.

Over its lifetime the total contract is estimated to be worth at least over $10 billion, at least half of which would be reinvested locally as part of an industrial offset programme, as required under the tender terms.

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Dassault to field the Rafale for India''s MRCA tender