Here’s Boeing full statement released a short while ago:
LONG BEACH, Calif., June 11, 2013 — The Indian Air Force (IAF) flew its first Boeing [NYSE: BA] C-17 Globemaster III to India today, becoming the newest operator of the leading airlifter.
“The C-17 will equip the Indian Air Force with amongst the world’s most advanced humanitarian and strategic capabilities,” said Air Vice Marshal SRK Nair, Assistant Chief of Air Staff Operations (Transport and Helicopters). “We have looked forward to this day when our Indian Air Force flies the first C-17 to its new home in India.”
Boeing is on track to deliver four more C-17s to the IAF this year and five in 2014. This first aircraft was transferred today after completion of a flight test program at Edwards Air Force Base in Palmdale, Calif., that began following the Jan. 22 delivery.
“Congratulations to the Indian Air Force on this milestone as India joins the worldwide community of C-17 operators,” said Tommy Dunehew, Boeing vice president of Business Development for Mobility, Surveillance and Engagement. “Nations turn to the C-17 for the capability to perform a wide range of operations, from peacekeeping and disaster relief to troop movements from semi-prepared airfields. This aircraft will provide the Indian Air Force with the versatility to augment airlift capability.”
Boeing has now delivered 254 C-17s, including 222 to the U.S. Air Force and a total of 32 C-17s to Australia, Canada, India, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the 12-member Strategic Airlift Capability initiative of NATO and Partnership for Peace nations.
Boeing will support the IAF C-17 fleet through the Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Program (GISP) Performance-Based Logistics contract. The GISP “virtual fleet” arrangement ensures mission readiness by providing all C-17 customers access to an extensive support network for worldwide parts availability and economies of scale.