The U.S. State Department approves the sale to the Government of India of ten (10) Boeing AGM-84L Harpoon Block II air-launched missiles and sixteen (16) Raytheon MK 54 All Up Round Lightweight Torpedoes (LWT) plus three (3) MK 54 Exercise Torpedoes and related equipment, for an awaited price of USD 165million.
The deal would include spare parts, technical documentation, and training material. Specialized Assignment Airlift Missions (SAAM) will bring U.S. Government and constructor agents needed to give technical assistance, installations, and logistics services.
According to the U.S. State Department, it is in the interest of the U.S. foreign policy and national defense to strengthen the U.S.-Indian strategic relationship and to improve Indian security to preserve political stability, order, and economic growth in the Indo-Pacific and South Asia region. Besides, the purchase will not alter the military balance in the area.
Indian navy Boeing P-8I aircraft could employ both Harpoon missiles and MK 54 Torpedoes in naval anti-surface warfare missions.
The P-8I is Boeing P-8s Indian variant. This multi-mission aircraft is employed for long-range anti-submarine warfare (ASW), anti-surface warfare (ASuW), and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. Of a total of 12 programmed planes, India has got eight. The remaining four aircraft are on-schedule to be delivered in 2020. The P-8I is suitable for coastal patrolling, search-and-rescue, anti-piracy, and supporting services.