France-based Safran group, which provides supplies to Rafale fighter jet manufacturers, has been asked to set up a facility which manufactures a small component of the company’s import requirement from Goa, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Sunday.
Speaking during the inauguration of a helicopter maintenance and repair centre in Sattari, in North Goa, Parrikar said that he hoped to see the manufacturing facility develop from a copter repair and maintenance operation to a helicopter engine manufacturing facility.
“Flacma, a part of the Safran group, supplies 20-25 per cent components to Rafale. So I told them to come with a small component of their requirement of importing from India into Goa,” Parrikar said.
The Defence Minister also said that out of the total value of Rs. 59,000 crore Rafale fighter jet deal, nearly Rs. 30,000 crore have been dealt with the procurement of equipment for the manufacture of the jets.
“The technology acquisition parameter is in the final stage, then there will be a final negotiation of price and the next year, actual construction of mines counter measure vessel will start,” Parrikar said while inaugurating a helicopter maintenance and repair centre in Sattari, located 40 kms from Panaji.
“This is a small beginning. HAL should tie up with Safran to manufacture engines. Goa requires such an engineering industry. From an MRO to engine manufacturing is the target I am keeping and I will push for that,” Parrikar said.
“In Western region, engines could be directly sent here so that they do not have to struggle at the base depot. This is first phase,” the Defence Minister said.
“From there it will slowly expand to making some parts and components and we wish that we can go for engine manufacturing,” he added.
“If HAL is to maintain engines, then they should tie-up Safran and come out with Make in India for manufacturing of engines. We are going to require between 6,000 to 10,000 engines in next eight to ten years, which is a big enough quantity and most of them are Safran engines,” he said, adding that the Goa government was willing to provide land to facilitate the project.