“Boeing is very pleased that the Indian government has expressed interest in acquiring the C-17 to modernize its airlift capabilities, and we look forward to working closely with them,” said Vivek Lall, vice president and India country head, Boeing Defense, Space & Security. “We believe the C-17 can fulfill India’s needs for military and humanitarian airlift to help it meet its growing domestic and international responsibilities.”
The C-17 conducted demonstration flights in February at Aero India 2009 in Bangalore, where members of the MoD and Indian Air Force had the opportunity to see the aircraft’s capabilities in action. The Indian Air Force wants to replace and augment its fleet of Russian-made An-32 and Il-76 airlifters.
There are currently 212 C-17s in service worldwide, including 19 with international customers. The U.S. Air Force, including active Guard and Reserve units, has 193. Other customers include the United Kingdom (which recently announced a contract for a 7th airlifter), Qatar, the Canadian Forces, the Royal Australian Air Force, and the 12-member Strategic Airlift Capability initiative of NATO and Partnership for Peace nations. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Air Force and Air Defence announced Jan. 6 that the UAE has signed a contract for the acquisition of six Boeing C-17s.
Excerpted Boeing Press Release
Photo by Shiv Aroor / Agra AFS