India-Russia MTA project runs into rough weather

The Indo-Russian project to develop a multi-role transport aircraft is facing hurdles after the Centre raised objections over the business plan proposed by Moscow for the project.

Last Updated: Oct 23, 2011, 13:58 PM IST

New Delhi: The Indo-Russian project to
develop a multi-role transport aircraft is facing hurdles
after the Centre raised objections over the business plan
proposed by Moscow for the project.

India was "not satisfied" over the business plan
submitted by the Russian side as there was nothing much for
its engineers and scientists to do in the development of the
proposed aircraft, Defence Ministry sources said here.

Defence Minister AK Antony had expressed India`s views
on the issue to his Russian counterpart Anatoly E Serdyukov
during his visit to the European nation earlier this month for
the 11th meeting of the India-Russia Inter-Governmental
Commission on Military Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-MTC).

The two sides have now decided to hold a meeting next
month to iron out the differences, the sources said.

Antony had also expressed concern at the tardy progress
made in the design and development of the MTA.

The two countries want the issues related to the aircraft
to be resolved before the visit of Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh to Russia in December.

The project has already got delayed. The Defence Ministry
had last year said it would start by beginning of this year.

The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and Russian Companies
UAC Transport Aircraft and Rosonboronexport had signed a
shareholders` agreement to incorporate a Joint Venture Company
for design, development and production of MTA.

The agreement was in pursuance to a deal signed between
India and Russian on November 12, 2007 for design, development
and production of a MTA.

The Joint Venture Company will have 50:50 shareholding
and the investment for the programme was worked out to be USD
600.7 million.

PTI