India is likely to buy 145 M777 Howitzers for $750 million to equip its Mountain Strike Corps.
The decision to buy ultra-light Howitzers produced by BAE Systems under the ‘Make In India’ program was discussed at a meeting on April 12 between Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar and his US counterpart Ashton Carter.
The artillery gun programme to equip the Mountain Strike Corps is being finalised as India and the US are in agreement on its “make in India” component.
The initial price notified by the US in 2012 was $694 million. The manufacturer has been seeking 10 per cent hike on the four-year-old price. The negotiation price is about $750 million.
The tender will be for associated equipment, parts, training and logistical support. The gun will come with laser inertial artillery pointing systems (LINAPS), maintenance, personnel training and training equipment, technical assistance, engineering and logistics support services. In India, the BAE Systems had tied up Mahindra as its business partner for its proposed in-country assembly, integration and test (AIT) facility for the M777 Howitzer.