Nigeria is currently in talks with India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd to purchase its Tejas fighter jets according to reports from Bloomberg quoting the chairman of Hindustan Aeronautics, C. B. Ananthakrishnan.
The Chairman of the military hardware manufacturer also mentioned Argentina, Egypt and the Philippines as countries they are discussing with to purchase these aircraft.
According to its latest annual report, Hindustan Aeronautics is expanding its presence in international markets by establishing offices.
The company is actively collaborating with the Nigerian Army Aviation and Argentine Air Force, providing training to officers and supplying spare parts to enhance exports.
Exports make up just 1% of revenues for the fighter jet maker that has seen a surge in large orders from the Indian Defence Force, but Prime Minister Modi wants to change that.
The Indian PM is targeting $5 billion in annual exports by the financial year ending March 2025.
Nigeria usually buys military hardware from United States, Russia, Brazil, Pakistan and China according to a 2021 report.
In January, the then President Buhari said Nigeria spent around $1 billion on weaponry to recover territories from the dreaded Boko Haram terrorist group.
Part of those funds were spent on the 12 Super Tucanos fighter jet purchased at a cost of almost $500 million from the United States.
Nigeria has been battling a motley of security issues since 2009 with the Boko Haram insurgency in the country’s North-east. In recent times, banditry and kidnapping have become rife across the North-west and North-central with states like Kaduna, Niger, Katsina and Zamfara the epic centre of the violence.
Beginning from 2017, separatist movements in the South-east took a violent dimension further add more burden to Nigeria’s overstretched military.
In August, a Nigeria Airforce helicopter crashed in Niger state while on a mission to rescue soldiers engaging with bandits.