Israel to sell India air-defense system in $777mn deal

The state-run Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) announced Wednesday that it had won a $777-million contract to supply India with an air- and missile-defense system, according to Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth.

“IAI has signed a deal to sell the Barak-8 aerial-defense system to India,” the paper reported, adding that the Indian Navy had agreed to purchase the system for seven of its vessels for a total of $777 million.

The Barak-8 is an air- and missile-defense system used by the Israeli Navy and by Indian naval, air and land forces.

Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman praised the purchase agreement, describing it as “more proof that security is an investment and not a liability to the State of Israel”.

“IAI is a national asset that we should maintain and enhance,” Lieberman said.

According to IAI, total revenue from sales of the Barak-8 system in recent years — including the latest deal with India — amounts to over $6 billion.

Last year, IAI signed a deal worth almost $2 billion to supply India’s army and navy with missile-defense systems.

Shortly afterward, the company won a $630-million contract to supply Barak-8 surface-to-air missile systems for four Indian naval vessels.

In a statement, IAI Chief Executive Officer Nimrod Sheffer said the company’s partnership with India “dated back many years”.

“India is a major market for IAI and we plan to… reinforce our positioning there,” he said.

JERUSALEM

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