World Bulletin / News Desk
France's defence minister said on Friday negotiations with India to sell 126 Rafale fighter jets from Dassault Aviation were proceeding well, but did not say when the deal would be finalized.
India picked the Rafale for exclusive negotiations in January 2012 after a hotly contested bidding war between rival suppliers. But differences over the industrial role of India's state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd has delayed the deal.
French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told reporters he was not concerned about the delay.
Under the deal, Dassault is expected to send 18 ready-made jets, then manufacture the rest in India. Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) will be company's lead partner in the process.
Dassault had earlier expressed doubts about the technological capability of HAL to manufacture such a sophisticated fighter jet.