More Hawks for India, as BAE Eyes Iraq and Poland
India signed a contract for 57 more BAE Hawk Advanced Jet Trainers (AJTs), all to be manufactured under license at the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) factory in Bangalore. A previous contract provided 24 Hawk AJTs from the BAE Systems production line in the UK, six more in kit form for assembly by HAL, and 36 to be license-built. Thirty-four of these had been delivered by June, including the first four to be manufactured by HAL from raw materials. According to BAE Systems, the latest contract is worth more than £500 million ($643 million) for specialist engineering services, the materials and equipment necessary for airframe production and the support package. A further 40 aircraft will go to the Indian air force, while the other 17 will provide a similar fast jet training solution for the Indian navy. BAE Systems also hopes to sell 24 Hawk AJTs to Iraq and 16 to Poland, where a request for proposals is expected soon as is a contract in the middle of next year. The Aermacchi M346 and the KAI T-50 are also competing for both of these requirements. BAE has delivered 23 of the 28 Hawk T2 AJTs for the UK Royal Air Force. The final aircraft is due later this year. As things stand, this will mark the end of Hawk production at BAE’s Brough facility, and final assembly and test flights at Warton.