American defence major Boeing has won the deal to supply 15 heavy-lift helicopters to the Indian Air Force defeating its rival Russian Mi-26 in the tender expected to be worth around $1 billion.
The Chinook CH47D has emerged as the lowest bidder in the tender and would be offered the deal to supply 15 of these helicopters to the IAF, Defence Ministry officials said here.
The ministry will now hold commercial negotiations with the United States firm to determine the price and finalise the procurement.
According to Indian defence procurement procedures, the firm emerging as the lowest bidder in the contract and fulfilling all the requirements of the tender is awarded the contract.
The IAF will use these helicopters to supply heavy-duty equipment in the higher reaches in the northern and northeastern states and will replace the existing fleet of Mi-26 choppers acquired by it in the Soviet era.
In this contract, the IAF determined the lowest bidder by taking into account the cost of operating the chopper through out its life span of 30 years and not merely the per unit cost of the participating machines, they said.
In the last four weeks, this is the second major helicopter deal awarded by the IAF to Boeing which has bagged most of the defence deals awarded by India to the American defence firms.It has so far bagged the deals to supply 10 C-17 heavy-lift aircraft worth $4.1 billion, 12 P-8I maritime surveillance aircraft for USD 3.1 billion, 22 Apache attack helicopters for $1.4 billion along with successful sales of Harpoon and other missiles to the Navy and the IAF.