Expecting a steep increase in the forthcoming Indian Defence Budget, Israel is offering a variety of high-tech defence products and cutting-edge technologies at the Aero India event being held in South Indian city of Bangalore.
Taking part in the exposition for the fifth time, the Israeli defence industry is displaying a range of sophisticated weapons, including anti-tank missiles, electronic warfare and drones, rocket motors, communications systems and armour for lucrative deals worldwide. The Indian Air Force (IAF) is already using a wide array of Israeli-made Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). In view of the potential to export more UAVs to the Indian armed forces, Rafael, Israel’s Armament Development Authority, has unveiled its latest UAV, named Skylite, a miniature drone that can be launched from a canister.
Besides its UAVs, Rafael has put up a wide range of battle-proven solutions for air, land, ground and aerospace systems. As one of the world’s most sophisticated defence firms, Rafael provides cost-effective systems and weapons such as missiles, air defence, target acquisition, early warning airborne systems, add-on armour and mine fields breaching to many countries, especially the US.
Though Israel has a substantial arms trade with India, Israel Defence ministry or Sibat officials declined to spell out details of the contracts and the business generated from the existing deals. According to the US-based Defence News’ latest issue, Israel’s defence industry had sold arms and munitions to India valued at $2.7 billion in 2003, constituting about 30 percent of its total orders. Quoting sources, the official web site of Aero India indicated that Rafael would sign a $25-million deal with the Indian Navy to provide about 20 Derby missiles that can be fired beyond visual range. “The missiles are designated to be used by Harriers stationed on India’s aircraft carrier,” said the web site, hosted by the Indian defence ministry. iftikhar gilani