India Abroad

India Has Cancelled $500 Million Missile Deal, Says Israeli Arms Firm

| January 4 , 2018 , 10:13 IST

India is the world's fifth largest military spender in the world, however, as the nation attempts to boost the 'Make In India' concept by using indigenous defence materials, it is reducing its spending internationally.

Israel’s state-owned defence contractor Rafael confirmed that India has cancelled a $500 million deal to develop Spike anti-tank guided missiles ahead of the first visit of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to India.

"Rafael has now received an official notification from India's Ministry of Defence concerning the cancellation of the Spike deal," Ishai David, a spokesman for the Rafael Advance Defence Systems Ltd, said to media.

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"Rafael regrets the decision and remains committed to cooperating with the Indian Ministry of Defence and to its strategy of continuing to work in India, an important market, as it has for more than two decades, to provide India with the most advanced and innovative systems," the company added in a statement.

Although the company did not give a reason for the cancellation of the missile deal, reports suggest that it was cancelled so that India can attempt an indigenous model.

The defence ministry has been pushing for transfer of technology in various weapon acquisitions from foreign defence majors to boost its domestic defence industry.

According to the original proposal, India had planned to acquire the Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs) for the Army at a cost of $500 million. Officials in India indicated earlier that the proposal was facing difficulties as the Israeli side had expressed reservations in the full transfer of technology as per the provisions of 'Make in India'.