If Dassault Aviation and its Rafale often make the front page of the specialised defence press regarding the endless negotiations over a potential fighter aircraft contract with India, it would be a shame to assume that French interests in India are concentrated on this one contract, however big it might be. Proof is that 38 French companies made the trip this week to Goa for Defexpo 2016. And so did FOB to find out what we could about the French companies who are attempting to “Make in India.”
These French companies came to India to try and get a share of the estimated US$150bn Indian defence market over the next decade. Both the “majors” such as Nexter, Thales and Airbus Helicopters, as well as innovative small and medium enterprises such as the ECA Group, Photonis and Roxel were exhibiting French know-how.
A record number of 1,030 defence companies from 47 different countries made the trip to Quitol in Goa, the village where India’s defence minister, Manohar Parrikar, was born. This 9th edition of Defexpo was able to take advantage of its new venue to organise a series of equipment demonstrations for the first time.
On Monday we’ll give you an exclusive report on our findings at Defexpo 2016!