Jul 9, 2014

Airbus rebrand leads Indian MoD to delay A330 MRTT contract signing

The Indian Air Force's  plans to procure six Airbus Military A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft are delayed again, this time by the trivial procedural hurdle of the manufacturer changing name.
In June 2014 India's Ministry of Defence (MoD) requested a legal opinion from the Law Ministry over the renaming of Cassidian to Airbus Defence and Space, which became effective from 1 January.
The then Cassidian bid for the MRTT contract in 2010 and was selected in early 2013 over Russia's Ilyushin Il-78.
Industry sources said parent company EADS had kept India's MoD informed of its impending rebranding exercise, as well as Cassidian's consequent name change, during negotiations for the six A330 MRTTs in 2013.
Although industry officials claim Cassidian's name change is unlikely to have "significant" bearing on the eventual MRTT contract outcome, they believe it will lead to delays in signing the deal as the MoD is seeking legal guarantees to ensure it is in line with the Defence Procurement Procedure.

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