India to complete largest defence export deal; BrahMos missiles set to reach Philippines

As per the initial deal, the Philippines will get three missile batteries for the missile system, which has a range of 290 kilometres and a speed of 2.8 Mach.
The BrahMos supersonic cruise missile being test-fired from a warship in the Bay of Bengal.
The BrahMos supersonic cruise missile being test-fired from a warship in the Bay of Bengal.Photo | Express, FILE

NEW DELHI: The Philippines is slated to receive the first batch of BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles on Friday, marking the culmination of India's first major defence export deal.

Corroborating the development sources, the operation to transfer the heavy equipment is being led by the Indian Air Force, with significant support coming from civil aircraft agencies.

“The long-haul flight carrying the heavy loads will be a non-stop six-hour journey before the equipment reaches the western parts of the Philippines," another source added.

India had announced a deal with the Philippines in January 2022 for the supply of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, making it the country's first major defence export order. The notice had originally been signed on December 31, 2021.

As reported earlier by TNIE, the Philippines Department of National Defence issued the ‘Notice of Award’ to India’s BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited, approving a USD 374.96 million (Rs 2,700 crore) contract for the purchase of a shore-based anti-ship missile system from India.

As per the initial deal, the Philippines will get three missile batteries for the missile system, which has a range of 290 kilometres and a speed of 2.8 Mach (thrice the speed of sound). The deal also encompassed training for operators and the necessary integrated logistics support package.

And in February 2023, operator training for the missile system was successfully conducted for 21 personnel of the Philippine Navy.

As per the Philippines Marine Corps, the trainees were awarded their interim missile badges and pins by the Indian Navy's Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral R Hari Kumar, in a valedictory ceremony for the operator training of the Shore-Based Anti-Ship Missile System (SBASMS).

The training, which lasted from January 23 to February 11, 2023, focused on the operations and maintenance of some of the most important logistics packages of the SBASMS that will be delivered to the Philippines.

India has been in talks with Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, and a few other nations that have shown interest in the system.

The BrahMos missile can be launched from submarines, ships, aircraft or land. According to sources, the missile—a collaboration between India and Russia—is currently undergoing a process where 83 percent of its components are being indigenized.

On January 11, 2022, India successfully test-fired the extended-range sea-to-sea variant of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile.

The missile was test-fired from the Indian Navy’s newly commissioned INS Visakhapatnam on the Western seaboard.

The extended-range version of BrahMos was developed after India's full membership of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), which removed caps on the range of the cruise missile. The plan has been to initially extend the range of attack to 450 km.

The BrahMos supersonic cruise missile being test-fired from a warship in the Bay of Bengal.
BrahMos missile alone can take India’s defence exports to USD 3 billion by 2026

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