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PARIS/new delhi: European aircraft manufacturer Airbus said yesterday that it has won a tender to supply India with six A330 air refuelling tankers, a deal potentially worth more than $1.0bn (¤770 m).
“We are pleased to confirm that we were selected by the Indian government following its tender for air refuelling tankers,” said a spokesman for Airbus Military, the group’s defence division, while declining to comment on the deal’s value, which would have a catalogue price of $1.25-1.38bn.
Airbus still has a way to go before it can take a signed contract to the bank however, as the development opened the door to a long process of negotiations between Delhi and the aircraft manufacturer.
As an example, the French company Dassault Aviation was chosen by India in January 2012 to supply 126 Rafale combat jets, but that deal has yet to be finalised.
Airbus had already won a bid to build air refuelling tankers for India moreover, but that deal was cancelled owing to irregularities in the tender process.
This time around, Airbus was competing head-to-head with the Russian group Ilyushin, which has already supplied aircraft to India.
If the Airbus contract with India is finalised, it would mark the sixth country to buy or say it will buy the tankers.
The others are Australia, Britain, France, The United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia.
An industry source said that India might need many more than just six of the planes, meanwhile.
The A330 MRTT (multirole tanker transport) can supply two aircraft with fuel at the same time, and in the configuration now being used by the Australian air force, can carry 111 tonnes of fuel, 37 tonnes of material and 270 passengers.
Hawaiian Airlines said yesterday it had signed a memorandum of understanding with Airbus to acquire 16 A321neo aircraft with a catalogue price of $1.8bn (¤1.4 bn).
The airline said its planes would be delivered from 2017 through 2020 and that the memorandum includes options for an additional nine jets that would take the value of the deal to $2.8bn.
Hawaiian Airlines said the acquisition of the fuel-efficient aircraft would help secure its competitiveness on the route to the US mainland.
Everyone at Hawaiian wants us to keep our position as the market leader in service quality, cost efficiency and choice of destinations,” Hawaiian Airlines chief executive Mark Dunkerley said in a statement.
“Ordering the A321neo will secure this legacy on routes to the US West Coast beyond the middle of this decade,” he added.