Reliance Group, which began commercial production of aircraft spares at its plant in Mihan-SEZ last month, plans to start work on another unit making radar components by October this year. The company is implementing the Rs30,000 crore offset arrangement, arising out the deal to buy 36 Raffale aircraft, from France’s Dassault for the Indian Air Force (IAF).
On April 18, Reliance started off with the production of nose-cones for Falcon, the business jet made by Dassault. Started on a small scale with over 40 workers, the first batch of nose-cones is expected to be dispatched by end of the year.
The same unit is planned to be expanded taking scale of employees to 600 eventually, said sources.
In the meantime plans are being worked out to set up a unit catering to Thales, also a French company and one of the key vendors of Dassault. The company makes radars and other electronic system. The radar unit will also be a part of the offset deal, said a source.
The radar unit will be registered as a separate entity for which the clearances are expected to be secured by July from the development commissioner for Mihan-SEZ. Work on the unit will start by October this year. It will have facilities to test radars and also make components. Initially, it may appoint 50 persons which may be scaled up in the future, the source said.
Last month a delegation of the French Aerospace Industries Association (GIFAS), also visited Mihan. Sources said Reliance is also planning to tie up with the GIFAS members which include small scale units too. The work advances services of various units under GIFAS which specialize in different areas of aircraft manufacturing may be needed.
If the deals work out their units will be set up in the Mihan-SEZ within the Dhirubhai Ambani Aerospace Park. If works out this may be the first ever venture of GIFAS members in India, the source said.
At Mihan, Reliance is coming up with an aviation manufacturing complex named after the company’s founder Dhirubhai Ambani. Starting from making aircraft spares there are plans to assemble unit at the Nagpur-SEZ. Almost entire works to be implemented under the offset deal will be undertaken here.