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INTERVIEW
 
‘The More the Indian Government is Able to Open the Access Channels, the Better it is Going to be for Their Goals of Importing Cutting Edge Technology’
-Senior vice president, international business and government, Textron Systems Corporation, Kevin J. Cosgriff    


Senior vice president, international business and government, Textron Systems Corporation, Kevin J. Cosgriff 
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How do you see Textron in the Indian defence market in the near future?

I think there are two answers to this question. One is what we are doing in Bangalore; we currently have 450 engineers working on site working on various projects like aerospace, engineering projects and similar other things for mostly Textron companies, not exclusively. We expect over the coming years to at least double the number of people working in that facility. It represents the Textron’s investment commitment in the range and depth of what we can do in India.

On the defence side, we are excited about number of things like the ongoing Sensor Fusion Weapons production and integration to the Indian Air Force where we are teamed with HAL as the government to government deal to make that happen over the coming years. We also have some discussions going on with DRDO to explore opportunities for some of our cutting edge technology for the unmanned aerial systems that can be brought into the Indian market.
We have an unmanned surface vessel that we will be displaying to the potential customers in India at DefExpo. The intention of this vessel craft is to be able to operate host ship more or less autonomously in a range of missions such as mine warfare and similar things that you might rather use an unmanned machine than a manned one. We also make some armoured security vehicles for US Army and Afghan Army and we are in discussions on how we can bring that capability into the Indian market. Textron also has Bell Helicopter which is a manufacturer of attack and utility helicopters in the US marine core and also the Tiltrotor V-22 Osprey for US marine corps and US special operations forces. We have a range of things we think we might interest to the Indian customer.

How is the weapons programme with the IAF (integration of SFW on Jaguar fighters) advancing?

We are in production of the weapons in US, the delivery of which will start later this year. The next step as a parallel, is to do some integration work on jaguars and make sure all the engineering details are being worked out a pace and eventually IAF will conduct both practice tests with an inner grounds and ultimately with live warheads. After that HAL will have responsibility for the integration work on the rest of the jaguar fleet. This is a multi-year process and we are essentially in year and two of it. Last year we spent a lot of work on the engineering side of the programme.

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