Last Updated : Feb 07, 2013 10:06 AM IST | Source: CNBC-TV18

Aero India: Lockheed Martin aiming at more defence deals

India is one of the fastest growing aviation markets in the world and can‘t be ignored by investors even if they don‘t like the regulatory environment

India is one of the fastest growing aviation markets in the world and can’t be ignored by investors even if they don't like the regulatory environment. That seems to sum up the sentiment at Aero India Day 1, the mega aviation showcase, which kicked off in Bangalore earlier today.

While, it may have lost out on the mega MMRCA fighter jet deal but Lockheed Martin is not walking away from India. Sunanda Jayaseelan of CNBC-TV18 reports why the company's Asia-PAC head is bullish on India.

A USD 20 million investment into a manufacturing facility is just the tip of the iceberg for Lockheed Martin’s plans for India. The manufacturing facility in Hyderabad, which is a JV with Tata Advanced Systems, manufactures components for its C 130 J aircraft, both for the domestic and export markets. The global defence and aerospace major is now pitching for sale of more 6 C 130 J aircraft with the Indian Airforce, in addition to the six it has delivered two years ago. Lockheed says it expects to expand its India plant from the present capacity of 24 aircraft a year.

Jim Gribbon, regional president, APAC says, “The Tata joint venture Lockheed Martin-Tata Aerostructures in Hyderabad is a prime example of the way we want to do business. Its facility is fantastic. It has offsets with working with Mahindra Defence and just now we are having discussions with other independent Indian companies about where they might be able to help us with our offset commitments.

And while the Government has cleared FDI in civil aviation last year, Lockheed Martin says it hopes the Government does the same as far as defense production is concerned.

First Published on Feb 6, 2013 10:19 pm
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