India and US to sign a $15 billion deal for India-US defence deal

The two countries are set to sign an agreement to buy $15bn worth of military hardware and services in a deal that has been delayed for years, India’s defence ministry said on Thursday.

The deal is expected to be signed by the Indian defence minister, Ajit Doval, in the coming days.

The $15.2bn contract for the purchase of 5,000 Rafale fighter jets is the largest ever for India and would mark the country’s first purchase of combat aircraft in the post-Cold War era.

India has been the main beneficiary of the defence deal, which is the second biggest of its kind for a single country after the $50bn deal signed in 2014 for 5,400 Rafale fighters.

India and the United States signed the deal on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hangzhou, China, in May.

Both countries have struggled to win over China as they strive to modernise their militaries to counter Beijing’s rise.

Last week, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he would not be attending the summit.