India’s Act east Policy will get a boost when another export order for shore based anti-ship variant of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile by year end is Inked. Sources have confirmed to Financial Express Online “Talks with Indonesia are in advanced stage for the export of the Indo-Russian BrahMos supersonic cruise missile. The deal could have been signed earlier, however, due to internal matters of that country, by year end, or early next year the deal is expected to be sealed.”
Indonesia will become the second Asean member country after the Philippines to import missiles from India.
FinancialExpress.com was the first to report in 2018, that Indonesia was among the other countries in the region to have expressed interest in the BrahMos Missile.
The Asean nations had approached India for the BrahMos and Akash Missiles during the 10 ASEAN leaders met during the ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit in New Delhi in January 2018.
Earlier this year, India and the Philippines had inked a USD 374.96 million contract for the supply of shore based anti-ship variant of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile. This made the Philippines the first Asean member country to import missiles from India.
The BrahMos missile that Indonesia is expected to import from India is going to be fitted onboard its warships. A team from BrahMos Aerospace joint venture between New Delhi and Moscow has already visited Indonesia shipyard to study the possibility of fitting the missile.
The BrahMos is a short-range ramjet supersonic cruise missile and according to the company it can be launched from aircraft, ships, land platforms and submarines. And this missile can fly at a speed of 2.8 Mach, or equivalent to three times the speed of sound.
The BrahMos which has been developed at a low budget of $300 million is also sought by other countries in the region including: Malaysia which is set to announce its final decision to buy Light Combat Aircraft (LCA), Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Financial Express Online had reported earlier that Vietnam was in negotiations with India for both BrahMos and Akash missiles. Talks are also going on with Malaysia for BrahMos Missile, those it’s just in the initial stage.
With the deal with Indonesia expected to be sealed year end/early next year, it will give India a strategic hold in the region as well as give a boost to the economy.
The announcement of the sale of BrahMos Missile to the Philippines was initially made by the Russian side in New Delhi. Russia will have no objection to exporting to Indonesia as it is already selling Su-27 fighter jets as well as Kilo Class submarines to that country.
Indonesia & India Military Cooperation
The bilateral relations between the two countries have been deepening over the years. Indonesia is considered to be an important partner in India’s “Act East” policy.In 2018, Financial Express Online had reported that the bilateral relations between the two countries have been elevated to “‘Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’ when Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited that country.
The main pillar of this partnership is based on maritime security and defence and security cooperation. And in 2018, the first ever Indian Navy – Indonesian Navy Bilateral Exercise ‘Samudra Shakti’ took place. This maiden drill focused on enhancing interoperability, expanding maritime co-operation, and to exchange best practices.
India and Indonesia are Indian Ocean Littoral neighbours and the two sides have been working towards strengthening military ties.
In view of the growing Chinese presence in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR), and its activities near Natuna Islands, both India and Indonesia are working towards deepening maritime cooperation and ensuring secure sea lanes of communication in the larger Indo-Pacific.