India to display indigenous helicopter at air expo

February 10th, 2009 - 3:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, Feb 10 (IANS) India will be displaying the export version of the indigenous advanced light helicopter (ALH) Dhruv for the first time at the seventh edition of the international air show here.

“This is for the first time that the export version of the ALH will be on display,” Secretary (defence production) Pradeep Kumar told reporters.

The exhibition of the export version of the ALH at Aero India 2009 is significant with the public sector undertaking Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd set to to export five helicopters to Ecuador.

“The deal has been finalised to export five Dhruv helicopters to Ecuador and the air chief of the Ecuador air force will be here for the airshow,” Kumar said.

However, he added that Afghanistan and Malaysia, which had earlier shown interest in the flagship helicopter of the HAL, had not made any export request.

“However, talks are going on with Mauritious and Suriname for the export,” Kumar added.

Besides there will also be many firsts to the seventh edition of the air show. Following the success of India’s lunar mission Chandrayan, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has also opened a pavilion at the air show.

The defence ministry has, for the first time, introduced a software to facilitate business to business meetings among public and private players.

“So far there have been 300 online registrations and 500 business meetings among Indian industries, with the foreign industries and the government have been scheduled,” said Kumar.

A Chinese delegation will also be participating in the air show for the first time.

The number of participants has also marked a significant increase from 192 in 2007 to 592 in 2009.

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