Indo-Israeli joint venture (JV) Astra Rafael Communication System (ARC) has opened a defence communication systems manufacturing facility in Hyderabad in the Indian state of Telangana.

ARC operates as a 51:49 JV between Indian firm Astra Mircowave Products and Israel-based Rafael Advanced Defence Systems.

The JV will design, develop and manufacture advanced tactical communication systems for the Indian Armed Forces.

Speaking to reporters at the inauguration event, Astra Microwave Products managing director Gurunatha Reddy stated that ARC will invest in advanced technology and production techniques.

The company will initially focus on providing software-defined radios and supplies to meet the Indian Armed Forces’ needs.

In the future, the JV wants to develop other advanced capabilities and explore export opportunities, The Hindu reported.

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Reddy was quoted by the publication as saying: “ARC will be doing something for defence communication, more specifically in manufacturing of software-defined radios to start with.

“Later, we will graduate into design and development of various equipment for defence communication, get into electronic warfare and signal intervention systems.”

Astra Microwave Products and its partner Rafael invested around Rs350m ($4.88m) into the JV.

Rafael Advanced Defence Systems president and CEO retired major general Yoav Har-Even said the newly opened facility will be involved in manufacturing its BNET software-defined radios.

The BNET battle communication system is used by Israeli Defence Forces.

Last month, Kalyani Rafael Advanced Systems (KRAS) won a contract from Rafael to manufacture 1,000 Barak 8 surface-to-air missile systems for the Indian Army and Air Force.

Barak 8 has the ability to tackle airborne threats such as enemy aircraft, anti-ship missiles, as well as unmanned aerial vehicles, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles.

KRAS is a JV between Rafael and India’s Kalyani Strategic Systems.