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Tata Group and Airbus Soar to New Heights: India’s First Private Sector Chopper Factory Set to Take Off

New Delhi, 26 January 2024 – In a groundbreaking move that propels India’s ‘Make in India’ initiative sky-high, Airbus Helicopters has joined forces with the Tata Group to launch the nation’s first-ever helicopter Final Assembly Line (FAL) in the private sector. This high-flying partnership aims to roll out the Airbus’ top-selling H125 helicopter from this new facility, targeting not only the Indian market but also looking to export to neighboring countries.

Marking a historic moment for Indian aviation, this venture will see Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL), a subsidiary of the Tata Group, collaborate with Airbus Helicopters to establish this state-of-the-art facility. This announcement was a highlight during French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to India, adding extra sparkle to the Republic Day celebrations on January 26.

The FAL will be a hub of activity, integrating major component assemblies, installing advanced avionics and mission systems, and overseeing the rigorous testing, qualification, and delivery of the H125 to its customers in India and beyond. With a timeline of 24 months to become operational, the first ‘Made in India’ H125s are expected to soar into the skies by 2026. Airbus and Tata will jointly decide on the location for this high-tech facility.

Guillaume Faury, CEO of Airbus, emphasized the significance of this venture, stating, “Helicopters play a pivotal role in nation-building. A ‘Made-in-India’ civil helicopter is not just a symbol of a confident, emerging India but also a key to unlocking the vast potential of the country’s helicopter market.” He added, “This assembly line, a joint endeavor with our trusted partner Tata, underscores Airbus’ commitment to nurturing the aerospace ecosystem in India.”

N. Chandrasekaran, Chairman of Tata Sons, expressed his enthusiasm, saying, “We’re thrilled to pioneer India’s first helicopter assembly line in the private sector. This facility, in partnership with Airbus, will be the birthplace of the world’s best-selling Airbus H125 single-engine helicopter, serving both Indian and international markets.”

The Indian-made H125 is set to revolutionize the use of helicopters in India, catering to a variety of sectors including emergency medical services, disaster management, law enforcement, tourism, and more. This versatile chopper is part of Airbus’ famed Ecureuil family and boasts an impressive record of over 38 million flight hours globally. Its high-altitude capabilities were showcased when it landed on Mount Everest, demonstrating its prowess in extreme conditions.

This venture is Airbus’ second FAL in India, following the C295 military transport aircraft facility in Vadodara, Gujarat, further solidifying Airbus’ commitment to India’s aerospace landscape. The move is part of Airbus’ broader strategy to develop a comprehensive aerospace ecosystem in India, encompassing aircraft assembly, component manufacturing, engineering, training, and more, thereby elevating India’s position in the global aviation sector.

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