Friday, January 13, 2012

Countdown To MMRCA?

We're square in the time window now for an announcement on the M-MRCA competition. The last ten days have been thick with rumours of a Eurofighter victory (the company has wisely stayed away from comment). It's an incredibly delicate situation now. Last night, Reuters Aero tweeted saying the two parties were called for a meeting, but that it was unclear if this pertained to a decision or an update. The tweet appeared to draw its essence from an earlier tweet in the day by Newsx defence editor Vishal Thapar, who claimed that only Eurofighter representatives had been called for a meeting. He similarly wondered in his tweet if this had been for a "verdict or clarification". Now, unless this meeting was hardcore top-secret, my information is that no representatives of either company was summoned to any meeting yesterday (Thursday, Jan 12). My sources at both vendor companies and the MoD said there was no meeting, but that it was expected "soon". But this is hardly important. Assuming that the meeting didn't in fact happen, it is after all expected to happen at any time.

The sense I get is the government has until Republic Day (Jan 26) to declare the lowest bidder -- if it wants to, that is. After that, the country enters a phase of an elaborate series of crucial state elections that bring with them their own political sensitivities and code of conduct guidelines. The sense I get, therefore, is that if the government intends to make an announcement this month, it has to be in the next 10-odd days. Otherwise, it could drift for months as the establishment's mind gets diverted. As always, stay tuned.

Photo / Shiv Aroor

41 comments :

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if the contenders have to reissue their proposals given the fact that their bids were available till the 31st of december ?

An Indian said...

Even if the Eurofighter has been found to be lowest bidder..does it automatically means that Indian Govt. is awarding a contract to Eurofighter ?

I doubt..
--First I understood both the bidders have quoted a quite high price for the contract.
--My understanding is Govt of India (MOD) will start the most complex calculations (permutations/combinations )and accordingly the cost negotiations..rounds.
--If the Eurofighter and MOD reaches into an agreement..on those combinations & pricing together.Only then Govt will possibly take any decision on awarding the contract to EF (provided Geo-Politics does not play any role i.e. Mr. Anthony remains as DM ).
--Then Indian Govt. will try to reap benefits from the countries related to the contract..i.e. Agreements on Permanent Seat in UN,Tread Agreements etc.
--Once these are achieved..then at a suitable time the actual contract will be awarded and declared.

Regards,

Anonymous said...

Shiv, there appears to be either backdoor lobbying or strategic parleys going on. That's possibly the only explanations for these rumours which have been spawned by a lot of 'journalists'.

Anonymous said...

No announcement is expected this month! All rumours floating around.

Anonymous said...

Shiv

When you say sources in MoD can you at least confirm whether these are Babus or Air HQ? I have no trust in the former at least.

Anonymous said...

Hello shiv!!!
Why do you post again a ef picture with your article?

Anonymous said...

Being frustrated by the performance of Team India in Australia, all the bookies have started betting for the MMRCA competition. For which contender will you put ur money guys.

Anonymous said...

I want LCA and not MMRCA.

Shubham said...

@Anon 6:09 PM : Rafale!

Anonymous said...

All smokes and mirrors! Way to early and EF will be massive loss to IAF! Talk to Saudi Arabia, please pple at the Gvt of India!

Mr. Ra said...

Now even if they decide within 2012, it should be considered OK.

Mr. Ra said...

Now even if they decide within 2012, it should be considered OK.

sam said...

I am guessing that the government will go with the lowest bidder. I pray it is the Rafale. Fact is we need a good A2G aircraft and while the Eurofighter has a good roadmap it was the Super Hornet the F16 and the Rafale that really offered a true A2G capability.

Also dealing with one more supplier and retraining IAF maintenance crews is a headache that is best not taken on.

But then the French have been arrogant and overpriced and I just hope that the same fool who priced the Mirage upgrade deal for Dassault didnt price this one too!!

sents said...

I think Eurofighter Typhoon may have won.

Anonymous said...

The choice of Rafale could explain the delays in the Jaguar upg programme, maybe. Such an MMRCA could replace them. With the EF, we'll have to keep both if the IAF want to preserve its A2G capability... So I'd prefer put my money on Rafale. More rational, clearly. Wait & see, but I hope not to be disappointed. Cheers !

Anonymous said...

Please....

Anonymous said...

GOI said within 3 weeks on the last day of 2011. This translates to a minimum of 3 weeks, and thus the decision will not happen prior to Jan 21, that's for sure. But where does the wait end, who knows. Mirage production ended as they could not wait for GOI to remain undecided. History tends to repeat, and my bet is on either a re-bid, or cancellation of this one for either Russian or American or home-made birds. This whole thing turned out to be a big circus. It's been going on for several years. In my opinion, this is an example of what not to do if you are a serious buyer.

Anonymous said...

One prediction. Once the order is in effect , I am sure CAG will find a "rounding" error that benefitted one of the vendors. Only q is how long before its found.

Som said...

The ghost of Bofors haunts forever :)

DJ said...

Countdown to what? To bleeding money of a poor country while 42% of its children starve?
This whole MMRCA is a cruel joke. We are buying $100million plus airplane to defend a country that has not seen 24 hour electricity! What are we defending? And against what?
Pakistan? A country that could not defeat us when it had obvious material and technological superiority in air power (Sabres vs. Gnats) today, it has no organized military capability to even think about invading India.
China? Their absolute economical superiority makes any war with them a bad prospect. Our war mongering with China sounds just like what Pakistan does against us.

Another major reason for aborting the countdown is the product we are getting suckered in to. The infrastructure, maintenance etc. required for either of these planes itself makes them totally undesirable. I heard people sulking at high price of Mirage upgrade. Imagine upgrading Rafales or EF! That too 126 of them..

Neither of them have been combat proven in REAL war. None of them are bought in much quantities except their places of origin for obvious reasons.

Is the need of hour for IAF that pressing that we can not take a moment to reflect where we are wasting our $20 billion? Is it too late to invest in local options or cheaper options? NO! for fun of defense reading and journalism, shopping spree like this is great but not for a country.

Anonymous said...

The Eurofighter is in a better position compared to Rafale. Six Nations have committed to buy atleast 559 aircraft whereas the French jet is yet to open its account in the international market.The MMRCA contract decision will have some impact on ongoing fighter competitions in Brazil, and the UAE. some more countries are considering these two aircraft along with others.

Anonymous said...

The procurement system is BADLY messed up. Even Indian "experts" are simply bull. India is not worth it. India gives no Indian citizen lasting pride. Time for all Indians to migrate from India. India can be left to the dogs there already are.

Anonymous said...

Anon @6:09: Thanks for the observation. I'll put my money on neither E nor R: I'll put my money on the MMRCA contract being delayed by a WHOLE year. After one year, they'll decide on an award for 62 jets, with the NTP coming after another 3 months after that. Let's see what happens, but let the betting start!

Anonymous said...

Is it too late to invest in local options or cheaper options? Can u specify which options r u talking abt


Wat are we defending? We are defending democracy n millions of ppl working to make India a better country

No country is perfect that does not mean we keep our defence down

In that war against Pakistan many lives could have been saved if we had technology on our side PLEASE DON'T TAKE OUR ARMY MEN'S LIFE FOR GRANTED!!

Anonymous said...

Indian cabinet ministers want to destroy India. They are being paid by foreign powers.

Anonymous said...

India's politicians take their army men's lifes for granted. I don't know why the armymen are stupid enough to not realize that.

Anonymous said...

many misinformation and propagand for nothing from eurofighter, crying fake victory. They are ridiculous.
They take her dream for reality, when come decision, that come only from India government.

Anonymous said...

I am f****ng bored by this unnecessary delay by the defence ministry & finance ministry. How many more brave pilots(who is someone's son,father & bro) before this scums who sit in both the ministry come to their senses.
Regards
Abhi
PS: Pardon my language Shiv, but I was actively waiting for the winner of the MRCA for the last 2 years.

Satish Chandra said...

Is there any news more important than the following? The Indian Army and Air Force are worthless for destroying India's number one enemy, the United States. They could have made themselves useful by destroying RAW which is a branch of the CIA against India. They have not done that. So now RAW will have to be destroyed by the simultaneous nuclear destruction of New Delhi, Washington and New York.

"India's greatest scientist and greatest living Indian publicly tortured in Harvard seminar, systematically and totally starved for up to 3 weeks at a time, made semi-starved and homeless and even blind for years, kept under 24-hour audio and video surveillance as well as surveillance of [and interference with] communications and electrical typewriter and computer use, document creation and photocopying, etc., by satellite for more than past 3 decades, systematically harassed and in poverty and neutralised and robbed of his work at the cost of hundreds of millions of dollars per year, robbed of crores in his money and property in India by C.I.A.-RAW, forced back into exile in the U.S., all with full cooperation and participation of India's RAW and India's C.I.A.-RAW-controlled prime ministers, politicians and media -- to keep India poor, weak and enslaved" and how this means the nuclear destruction of New Delhi and then the coast-to-coast destruction of the United States.

I asked the Indian Army to arrest the top one thousand or so officers of RAW. It has not done so. Before that, more than a decade ago when the Indian Air Force went over Sri Lanka against the LTTE, I wrote it should just bomb the RAW headquarters in New Delhi and that will take care of the problem because the LTTE was sponsored by RAW. The Indian Air Force did not do that. But India's nuclear forces obey Satish Chandra. He does not need India's conventional forces or the rest of the government and citizenry to defend India which requires the destruction of RAW which will be done by nuclear means, that is, the simultaneous nuclear destruction of New Delhi, Washington and New York, with a warning that additional U. S. cities will be destroyed, with nuclear warheads already emplaced in them by special forces, if there is any retaliation.

I am India's expert in strategic defence, father of India's strategic program including the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program and the world's greatest scientist ( biography in Marquis' Who's Who in the World, 2012 and earlier editions). See 'What You Should Know About RAW' in my blog titled 'Nuclear Supremacy For India Over U.S.' which can be found by a Yahoo/Google search with the title.

Satish Chandra

Anonymous said...

Shiv

I feel the whole deal should be scrapped. Eurofighter & Rafale are no good. In fact one of the analysis on idrw says they are a cross between F15 , F16XL & F18. So nothing unique about them. Why not manufacture some more SU-30MKI or import directly. If not get the production line of MIRAGE 2000 re-opened & get all the 4.5 gen features added.
Even gulf countries are shying away from typhoon & rafale so why give these fighters a lifeline by contracting one. It seems similar to sachin gifting his wicket to debutants & making them big.
Prabhakar

Anonymous said...

Satish, did you forget to take your medicine?
You definitely provide a great laughing stock. Borat of Indian defense.

AP_FromPA said...

Satish Chandra @ 2:28AM

What?

bradshaw said...

Hi SHIV,

Got this quote from one of the facebook forum , is there any truth in this ????

India Against Congress

तो ये असली वजह है जनरल वीके सिंह को हटाने की

असल मे सेना प्रमुख वी के सिंह यूरो जेट फाइटर के सौदे के खिलाफ है और उन्होंने इस प्रस्ताव को ख़ारिज कर दिया है ..क्योकि ये यूरो जेट फाइटर यूरोप के ठंडे माहौल को ध्यान मे रखकर डिजाइन किया गया है ..

लेकिन अब जो खुलासे हों रहे है वो बड़े चौकाने वाले है ..फ्रांस की राष्ट्रपति निकोलस सरकोजी की पत्नी कार्ला ब्रूनी इटली की है और सोनिया गाँधी की एक बहन के पुत्रबधू की ममेरी बहन है .
और यूरो जेट फाइटर यूरोप के बीस देशो की साझा कम्पनी एयर बस इण्डस्ट्रीज बनाती है जिसके इटली वाले डिविजन का मलिक क्यात्रोची का छोटा बेटा है ..

मित्रों अब आप लोगो को समझ मे आ गया होगा कि सरकार जनरल वीके सिंह को क्यों हटाना चाहती है ...

Anonymous said...

Well, 3 weeks into 2012 have passed and nothing announced, as expected. How many years late is this MMRCA decision? Amazing. If corporations were managed this way they would go out of business. Doing big business in India seems anything but straight forward. In the end that is a guarantee for India never becoming a real peer in highly developed production and new technologies. Continued cheap production it is then...

Anonymous said...

Shiv its high time you stop this MMRCA deal thing. Its been going on and on. Let the govt take its sweet time of another 10 years to decide. Antony and MOD are the most non performing assets of India. Antony will shiver in his dhoti the day the chinese comes a calling on his door steps. From your blog I have seen articles upon articles regarding MMRCA. How many years does India need to procure? The worst Management and time delay tactics. As it is Manmohan singh doesnt move and with Antony its worse. I do agree he is straight forward in his deals, but he needs to learn something called Time schedules. Utter hopeless piece of junk will be the MMRCA by the time it reaches in Indias hands. Whether you will moderate my comment or not, it does not matter. It shows how the Indian people are frustrated with Red tapism and the babus. You just keep on writing and writing.

sents said...

The delay may have something to do with the sudden depreciation of rupee value. I am not sure, but it is a very big deal.

Anonymous said...

On Dec 31st, GOI said a decision within 3 weeks, Jan 21st was that deadline, and as per the tradition, GOI once again made a fool out of themselves by not being able to make a decision within the time they said they would. So unless we hear of a decision within the next few hours, everything is going as expected.

One thing that I never understood was the fact they benchmarking happened after the bids were submitted. I do bidding for my work, though I do not work in Defense or with 10 billion dollors, I do work on budgets that may be as high as 5 million dollors at a time. We Benchmark up front, we put a list of everything that we want, in this case it will be how-many airframes, engines, weapons, hours of training, maintenance package for let's say 10 years, number of paint jobs during that period. We also put in for optional items that are listed. Then we take this benchmark report and send it to the vendors and let them populate unit cost for each and every single item. This way in the end, when you compare the budget you are comparing the same parameters. You do not want to see vendor 1 quoting for only 10 spare engines, while the other quoting for 12 (this is a simple example) but breaking down each and every line item up-front is the only way to make sure you are not comparing apples to oranges at the end. Benchmarking after the bids, to me was the most idiotic thing I have ever heard of. The real victims in this is the IAF. I hope they learn from this fiasco and improve their business skills so that such mistakes are not repeated again.

Anonymous said...

100% reliable information!! Rafale will be announced as the winner of the MMRCA. The French DGSE intelligence agency has successfully exploited its sources and contacts in the Govt. of India and the Gandhi family that controls India.

Anonymous said...

It's the last day of Jan 2012, and we're still waiting. Delay after delay, whereas expeditiousness should have been the main criteria for this deal!

Anonymous said...

Good news. It's late in the day 31 Jan 2012, and India has officially announced they will be buying Rafales! Congratulations India, great choice.

Anonymous said...

Rafael get's it !!