Buying Spree

S President Donald Trump might have ranted about India’s high tariffs on Harley Davidson motorcyles and US-made whisky, but here’s something he can cheer about. India’s defence ministry recently approved the purchase of 72,000 battle rifles for the Indian Army made by SIG Sauer, a New Hampshire US-based small arms maker.

SIG’s bid emerged as the lowest among six global firms who had responded to the army’s fast-track procurement tender last year. MoD sources say the deal, worth an estimated Rs 700 crore, is likely to be signed within a week. All rifles are to be manufactured in the US and shipped to India by next year, ending the army’s decade-long quest for a modern rifle to equip its soldiers.

The SIG 716 battle rifles worth roughly $100 million are India’s largest small arms purchase from the US. They are meant to replace INSAS and AK-47 assault rifles used by the army. Read More

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