India places £700m Hawk aircraft order

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Providing the centrepiece of a three-day visit to India by one of the most significant UK delegations ever to visit, led by the Prime Minister, today (28 July) saw the announcement of agreement for the supply of 57 British Hawk trainer aircraft. The order follows on from a previous agreement in 2004 to supply 66 Hawk aircraft to India.

The BAE Systems Hawk will be powered by the Mk871 variant of Rolls Royce's Adour engine and will be assembled in Bangalore, India, in partnership with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). The deal is worth around £700 million, of which over £500 million is for BAE Systems and up to £200 million for Rolls-Royce. It will support over 200 jobs in the UK. Business Secretary Dr Vince Cable, who witnessed the signing of the agreement alongside the Prime Minister, said that he looked for further cooperation between the UK and India on defence. "I am pleased that the Indian Government is considering the Eurofighter Typhoon for its medium multi-role combat aircraft. This bid has the full backing of UK Government," he said. The Indian Government is considering the Eurofighter Typhoon in a bid that is supported by all four of the Eurofighter partner nations. The programme would be worth at least £5 billion for over 200 UK companies in the supply chain, and would support up to 5,000 jobs in the UK. According to figures announced last week, the UK is the second largest supplier of defence equipment in the world. Defence sales generated £7.2 billion of sales in 2009, and some 54,000 jobs in the UK are linked to defence exports.