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Historic Air Deals Signed by India with US and France

A massive aircraft order has been made by India, becoming one of the largest in aviation history. The Tata-group-owned Air India signed a purchase of 470 aircraft which is a mix of US company Boeing aircraft and French firm Airbus. On an aggregate basis, the purchase value at the list prices of 470 firm orders, 210 purchase rights for aircraft, and 160 options is $115 billion, according to sources.

The biggest airlines in India say the first of the new fleet will enter service in late 2023. The historic deal made by India underlines the ambitious vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in order to boost the country’s standing in the aviation sector.

The order that is placed by India comprises 40 Airbus A350s, 20 Boeing 787s, and 10 Boeing 777-9s widebody aircraft. The aircraft will be deployed on long-haul international routes. Moreover, 210 Airbus A320/321 neos, and 190 Boeing 737 MAX narrow-body aircraft will largely operate on domestic routes.

The ambitions of Air India have been underscored under its new owner, Tata, to regain its preeminent status and to capitalise on the emergence of India as a major aviation market. A virtual meeting was held between Prime Minister Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron on the signing of the Air-India Air-Bus Agreement for the purchase of 250 aircraft. It is a landmark agreement and a significant milestone for India and France’s strategic partnership. Modi in his speech said that the deal is a testament to the enriching relationship between France and India along with the success and ambitions of the civil aviation industry of India.

In the near future, India will become the third largest market in the world in the aviation sector, as said by Modi. He further said that based on several estimates, India will require over 2,000 aircraft in the next fifteen years. Several new opportunities are emerging under “Make in India” in the sphere of aerospace manufacturing. French President Macron said that this achievement shows that Airbus and all its French partners, including Safran, are dedicated to the development of new areas of cooperation with India.

After US President Joe Biden described it as a “historic agreement,”  the purchase of 220 planes from Boeing for $34 billion was announced by Air India. Also, it made an option to buy 70 more aircraft that could make a total transaction value of $45.9 billion. President Biden said that he is proud to announce the purchase of over 200 American-made aircraft through a historic agreement between Boeing and Air India.

PM Modi and President Biden also spoke over the telephone to welcome the “historic and landmark agreement” as a shining example of mutually beneficial collaboration that would lead to creating new opportunities for employment in both nations.