On June 7, 2023, General Electric (GE) announced that they have been granted permission by the US government to transfer their jet engine technology to India. This move will see GE team up with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), a government-owned company, to co-produce jet engines for India’s fighter jet program.
The agreement is expected to be made public during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s upcoming visit to the US. The deal is set to benefit around 500-600 Indian micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs). Currently, the specifics of the technology transfer, timelines, and payment arrangements are being discussed, and the final agreement is expected to be signed during Modi’s visit to the US.
HAL’s existing engine division in Koraput, Odisha, is being considered as the location for co-production. Interestingly, this is not the first time GE and HAL have tried to strike a deal. A similar deal fell through in 2012 because the Indian government wanted more in terms of technology transfer. However, sources suggest that they have now reached an agreement on higher levels of technology transfer, making India the only US ally with such a deal.
The deal will require approval from Congress, but it has already reportedly received high-level political approval. Overall, this agreement is a significant step towards strengthening the relationship between the US and India in the field of technology and manufacturing.