Spike or Javelin? India Still Undecided On A Billion Dollar Anti-Tank Missile Deal

 Indian Army is planning to equip its ground forces with thousands of
anti-tank missiles to be built in India. The Indian military considers
two options, both of them exclusive – the FGM-148 Javelin, proposed
under a Government-to-Government (G2G) program via U.S. Foreign Military
Sale (FMS), and the Spike MR, proposed by Israel’s Rafael Advanced
Defense Systems, being the only bidder in an international tender, which
specified characteristics and specifications only the Israeli company
could meet.
The Indian Army plans to install the missiles on infantry combat
vehicles currently carrying locally produced AT-5 or Milan missiles.

The Indian Ministry of Defense plans to order 321 launchers, and 8,356
missiles, plus 15 training simulators in a multi-phase arms package
worth over one billion US$. Two options are currently on the table – the
U.S. Javelin and the Israeli Spike MR.

The current decision by the Indian authorities clears the way for an
official selection of Rafael as a preferred supplier of the missile but
does not guarantee winning the order, since as a single supplier a
company is most exposed to procedural and bureaucratic objections that
are likely to delay the program, enabling competitors to gain pressure
in hope for a wind change at the Indian MOD. Overall, a single supplier
status is often approved for short term programs, justified by rapidly
addressing urgent operational requirements. (An examplem is the recent
French acquisition of Javelin missiles, to equip its units in
Afghanistan.)