India not abandoning Russian-Indian project to develop cargo aircraft

India has not formally given up the joint project to develop a Multipurpose Transport Aircraft, Igor Bevzyuk, Medium Transport Aircraft (MTA) Program Manager at the Ilyushin Aviation Complex Public Joint Stock Company, told TASS.

“The requirements for the Russian-Indian Multipurpose Transport Aircraft have been outlined after a fairly long period. However, the risks related to the implementation of some of the requirements have led to freezing this project, although de jure the Indians have not abandoned it completely,” he said.

Commenting on the possible reasons for the project’s suspension, Bevzyuk noted “the set of requirements to the aircraft has led by a high degree of technical risks.”

The framework agreement on developing cargo aircraft capable of carrying up to 20 tonnes for the Russian and Indian Air Forces was signed in September 2010. In 2015, media reports said Moscow and New Delhi planned to agree on the pre-contractual documentation under the MTA program. Plans were in store to begin the basic designing cycle before the end of the year, Yury Slyusar, President of the United Aircraft Corporation, stated.

However, Ilyushin’s ex-Director General Sergey Velmozhkin said at the beginning of 2016 that the joint Russian-Indian project to develop a transport warplane had been suspended.

By: TASS

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