India’s defence ministry on Tuesday said the country is still behind the others in building the Bofor F-35 fighter jet, which the United States, Britain and others are now building.
The ministry said India had been a latecomer in building fighter jets.
The Bofore F-22, a variant of the fighter jet the US has already ordered, is also the country’s second-lowest acquisition cost.
“While the world is now building the F-16s, India is still making the Fs-35,” Defence Minister Anil Vij said in a speech.
“We will continue to be the last one behind the world when it comes to fighter aircraft.”
The Bf-35 has been a priority for India since its inception in 2003, when the country was the only Western nation to procure a fighter jet from the US.
India has been seeking more than 10,000 F-15 fighter jets to replace the ageing F-14s and F-18s.
However, the defence ministry has said the new fighter jets will cost about $100bn (£75bn) each, while the F18 is expected to cost about twice that.
The United States is the only other major country to have ordered a single F-4 fighter jet for the Indian Air Force.
“India is the most advanced fighter in the world, with an advanced stealth fighter and a combat-capable combat aircraft.
We are not just a country that has been working for a long time.
We have always been working on new technologies and are very good at this,” Vij said.