ShinMaywa all set to clinch am­phibi­ous deal


ShinMaywa In­dus­tries is up­beat as dur­ing the re­cent In­dian Prime Min­is­ter Dr. Man­mo­han Singh’s visit to Ja­pan the of­fer of ShinMaywa US-2 am­phibi­ous air­craft to the In­dian Navy fig­ured in the dis­cus­sions. “That is a good sign,” said the com­pany’s Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Kanji Ishi­maru on the side­lines of NAMEXPO 2013 in Kochi.

It is al­most two years since ShinMaywa es­tab­lished its pres­ence in In­dia re­spond­ing to the re­quest for in­for­ma­tion (RFI) of the In­dian Navy for nine am­phibi­ous air­craft. “We are con­fi­dent as our prod­uct is the best as it has multi-role ca­pa­bil­i­ties – re­mote is­land sup­port, search and res­cue, anti-piracy, outer sea op­er­a­tions among oth­ers.” It is not weaponised.

Ishi­maru told SP’s M.A.I. that the com­pany was look­ing for an In­dian col­lab­o­ra­tor to meet the off­set re­quire­ments. “The off­set re­quire­ments are chal­leng­ing and we are look­ing for a part­ner in the main­te­nance re­pair and over­haul (MRO) seg­ment.” Tak­ing the exam- ple of Suzuki which made the first ma­jor break­through in In­dia and found suc­cess, he said that ShinMaywa was en­thused by the In­dian mar­ket. “Like Suzuki we are look­ing for long-term re­la­tion­ship.”

Talk­ing about the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of the US-2, he men­tioned that no other am­phibi­ous air­craft had outer sea land­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties, land­ing when the waves were even 3 me­tres high, com­pared to the com­peti­tors who could max 1.2 me­tres. The air­craft has long range – 4,700 km, needs about 300 me­tres only for take-off and land­ing and a good pay­load (it can carry 30 sol­diers).

Ya­suo Kawan­ishi, Gen­eral Man­ager (Busi­ness De­vel­op­ment), said: “We are wait­ing for a re­quest for pro­posal from the Navy.”

Giv­ing an ex­am­ple of its search and res­cue op­er­a­tions, re­cently the US-2i res­cued a news­caster who was drown­ing in the Pa­cific Ocean, 1,200 km from shore. “Reach­ing by boat/ ship would have taken days, but the air­craft did a mar­vel­lous job.”

— R. Chandrakanth


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