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India-Sweden Defence Cooperation
Jun 15, 2015

The Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist was on an official visit to India from 9 to 12 June. In his meeting with Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar both sides discussed issues of mutual interests concerning bilateral defence cooperation and regional security scenario.

  • The issue of participation of Swedish firms in defence manufacturing in India under the ‘Make-in-India’ initiative was also discussed. 

  • Sweden has offered to collaborate with India on production of light combat aircraft in the country along with state-of-the-art submarines. 

  • Both countries agreed to continue to explore opportunities for enhancing cooperation between defence establishments of both sides in mutually agreed areas. 

  • Both sides discussed issues of mutual interests concerning bilateral defence cooperation and regional security scenario.

  • Sweden talked about possible collaboration in manufacturing single engine light combat planes. 

  • Both sides exchanged views on terrorism and agreed to cooperate in this regard. 

  • The Swedish Defence Minister also visited Bangalore for interactions with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) and Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL).

Swedish firm Saab is likely to insist on a government-to-government (G2G) deal if they step into assist India in developing and manufacturing a light fighter. 

It is to be noted here that Swedish company Saab had offered JAS39 Gripen-E light fighter to India when the tender for Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft was announced. The bid was finally won (now cancelled) by French firm Dassault Aviation. Gripen is said to be a far better version of India's indigenous light combat aircraft Tejas which has been in the making for nearly 30 years. 


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