Modi directs India should reduce dependence on defence imports

May 1, 2020
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has directed that India should reduce dependence on imports and take forward “Make in India” to build its domestic capabilities in defence equipment.

At a meeting to discuss ways to boost defence and aerospace sector, it was discussed that defence expenditure be economised and the savings be channelised for strategic defence capital acquisition. Modi also stressed on the reforms to ensure a self reliant defence industry.

According to a statement by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), the Prime Minister on Thursday emphasised strengthening the domestic capacity for designing, developing and manufacturing state-of-the-art defence equipment.

Modi held a detailed meeting to deliberate the potential reforms to ensure a robust and self-reliant defence industry in India that caters to short and long term needs of the armed forces and initiatives to give a boost to the economy in the backdrop of COVID-19.

The discussions involved reforming of the functioning of the ordnance factories, streamlining procurement procedures, focused resource allocation, encouraging R&D/innovation, attracting investment in critical defence technologies and promotion of exports.

The Prime Minister laid emphasis on positioning India among the top countries of the world in defence and aerospace sectors, from design to production, with active participation of public and private sector fulfilling the twin objectives of self-reliance and exports. He reviewed the proposed reforms for attracting domestic and foreign investment in defence sector.

During the meeting, it was discussed that defence expenditure be economised and the savings be channelised for strategic defence capital acquisition.

Issues relating to defence procurement processes, offset policies, indigenisation of spares, transfer of technology, attracting global OEMs to establish manufacturing facilities in India, expanding our presence in international supply chains, etc. were also deliberated.

For India to emerge as a global leader in defence manufacturing, focus on the export of quality and state-of-the-art equipment/systems/platforms has also been emphasised.

The Prime Minister directed that India should reduce dependence on imports and take forward “Make in India” to build its domestic capabilities for designing, developing and manufacturing state-of-the-art defence equipment.

He emphasised on initiatives to promote export of defence products along with industry participation in global defence product value chain and to create an environment that encourages R&D, rewards innovation, creates Indian IP ownership.

The meeting was attended by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Home Minister Amit Shah, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and senior officials of the government. IANS