Possible sale of Boeing C-17 aircraft to India approved: Pentagon
Washington, June 29: The Trump administration's decision to sell one C-17 transport aircraft to India will improve its capability to meet current and future strategic airlift requirements, the Pentagon has said.
The US Defense Security and Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said the State Department has approved the sale to India of the final C-17 for USD336.2 million. The proposed deal, which still needs to be approved by Congress, covers equipment as well as support in addition to the aircraft. The Indian Air Force (IAF) already fields 10 C-17s that are flown by 81 Squadron out of Hindon Air Force Station, near Delhi.
"The proposed sale will improve India's capability to meet current and future strategic airlift requirements," Defence Security Cooperation Agency said in a notification to the Congress.
"India lies in a region prone to natural disasters and will use the additional capability for humanitarian assistance and disaster relief," the agency said. In addition, through this purchase India will be able to provide more rapid strategic combat airlift capabilities for its armed forces. India currently operates C-17 aircraft and will have no difficulty absorbing this aircraft into its armed forces, the agency said adding that the proposed sale will not alter the basic military balance in the region. The Congressional notification said that a determination has been made that India can provide substantially the same degree of protection for the sensitive technology being released as the US.
"This proposed sale is necessary to the furtherance of the US, foreign policy and national security objectives outlined in the Policy Justification," the Pentagon said.