Indian Navy to get lethal MK-45 5-inch/62 calibre guns, Trump administration approves sale

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New Delhi | Published: November 21, 2019 3:45:36 PM

According to the notification, the proposed sale is going to support the US foreign policy and national security and will help in improving the security of a strategic regional partner and will not in any way impact the military balance in the region.

Indian Navy, MK-45 5-inch, 62 calibre guns, donald trump, trump administrationOnce the deal is inked, India will be joining Japan, Turkey and South Korea who are close allies of the US and have the MK 45 system.

Ahead of the second 2+2 Indo-US Ministerial Dialogue next month, the Trump administration has given its approval for thirteen MK 45 5 inch/62 calibre (MOD 4) naval guns for the Indian Navy and related equipment for an estimated cost of $ one billion. Besides the guns the approval has also been given for almost 3,500 D349 Projectile, 5”/54 MK 92 MOD 1 ammunition.

Once the deal is inked, India will be joining Japan, Turkey and South Korea who are close allies of the US and have the MK 45 system.

For the Indian Navy, these guns will be fitted on the P15A and P17A ships. According to informed sources who wished to remain anonymous the request for these guns were made to the US last year. “The break up for these guns is: four out of 13 will be on Vishakhapatnam class stealth destroyers (P15A) and seven will be on Shivalik Class stealth Frigates (P17A), and out of the balance one each will be going to INS Dronacharya, Missile and Gunnery school and INS Valsura, Electrical and Weapons Engineering school based in Gujarat,” the source explained.

According to the notification from the US Defence Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), the MK-45 Gun System while enhancing interoperability with the US and other allied forces, will be given the Indian Navy the capability to conduct anti-surface warfare and anti-air defence missions. The guns will be coming to India through the Foreign Military sales route as has been announced by the US State Department and the BAE Systems Land and Armaments, with gun manufacturing in Louisville, Kentucky will be the main contractor.

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According to informed sources who wished to remain anonymous the request for these guns was made to the US last year.

The notification has clearly stated that the sale has not been concluded yet and next month when the two sides will meet for the second round of 2+2 Indo-US Ministerial Dialogue in Washington DC, the deal will be discussed too. And the deal which has yet to be inked will also include spare parts, personnel training and equipment training, publications and technical data, transportation, the US Government and contractor technical assistance – in this case, the BAE Systems and other related logistics support.

This will be the second gun India is buying from the US based BAE Systems Land and Armaments, and due to the constant changes in geo-strategic scenario these guns are expected to enhance the country’s ability to meet the present and the future threats from the enemies.

According to the notification, the proposed sale is going to support the US foreign policy and national security and will help in improving the security of a strategic regional partner and will not in any way impact the military balance in the region.

BAE Systems has earlier provided $ 750 million 145 M777 155mm/39-calibre ultra lightweight howitzer (ULH) guns for the Indian Army and the first three of these guns were inducted in the Indian Army last year.

At the time of the induction, vice president and general manager of BAE Systems Weapons Systems, Joe Senftle, had said that “The M777 brings a new level of capability to the artillery unit and these guns can operate in areas that are difficult to access and is also very easy to maintain.”

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