Indian Air Chief PV Naik on Monday watched the demonstration flight of the prototype of fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) at a Russian airbase near Moscow, which will be jointly developed and produced by the two countries under an inter-governmental agreement signed in October 2007.
Besides the flight demonstration of one of the two prototypes of PAK-FA T-50 (FGFA) fighter, the Indian Air Chief also watched the flight of modernised MiG-29UPG of the Indian Air Force at the airfield of M M Gromov Flight Research Institute in Zhukovsky town near Moscow.
Under a multi-million dollar contract signed in 2008, Russia's MiG Aircraft Corporation is upgrading six of the IAF's fighter MiG-29 fleet, while rest will be modernised in India for which the Russian aircraft maker will supply kits.
In the course of upgradation the MiG-29 fighters in service with IAF their avionics will be unified with the MiG-29K deck based fighters for the Vikramaditya aircraft carrier (former Gorshkov), including systems developed by HAL and Bharat Dynamics and French companies, according to a United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) release, the umbrella organisation of Sukhoi and MiG Corporations.
President of UAC and simultaneously CEO of Sukhoi and MiG corporation, Mikhail Pogosyan, officials of Rosoboronexport state arms exporter and Russian Air Force also present at the airfield during the demonstration of the fighter jets.
"For the United Aircraft Corporation Russian-Indian cooperation is a long-term partnership based on over fifty year long interaction," Pogosyan was quoted as saying by his press service.
This was first high level interaction between Russian and Indian officials after Russia's MiG-35 lost the race for IAF's multi billon dollar mega-tender for the acquisition of 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) last month.