NEW DELHI: The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified
Congress on April 22, 2010 of the possible sale of ten Boeing C-17
Globemaster III aircraft to the Indian Air Force. This is an important step forward in the U.S. Foreign Military Sales process and is a necessary prerequisite to negotiations on the deal.
After hearing of the notification, U.S. Ambassador to India Timothy
J. Roemer said, “The potential sale of C-17s strengthens the growing
partnership between our two countries, and demonstrates our enduring
commitment to sharing the
world’s best technology with India. This sale will offer economic
benefits for both India and the United States and will likely include
significant job creation in both countries. India is a leading partner
in our efforts to promote regional stability, peace and economic
The C-17 is the workhorse of the U.S. Air Force transport fleet and has proven highly reliable in the harsh environments of Iraq and Afghanistan. The Indian Air
Force will use the C-17s to modernize India’s armed forces with new
cargo capabilities. With a payload of 164,900 pounds, the C-17 can take
off from a 7,000-foot airfield, fly 2,400 nautical miles, and land on a small, austere airfield in 3,000 feet or less.
In addition to the U.S. Air Force, the C-17 is currently in service with the British Royal Air Force, the Royal Australian Air Force, the Canadian Forces, NATO and Qatar, with C-17s on order for the UAE. .
Although the official notification to Congress lists the potential
value as $5.8 billion, this represents the highest possible estimate
for the sale, and includes all potential services offered. The actual cost will be based on Indian Air Force requirements and has yet to be negotiated.