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Centre to roll out more steps to attract investment in defence sector

Tuesday, 11 Aug 2020
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The Centre will unveil more steps to attract investment in defence manufacturing so that India can produce world-class military platforms and weapons systems. 
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh unveiled on 10 August 2020 new infrastructure and facilities in a number of leading state-run defence majors to enhance their production lines and capabilities.
India will stop import of 101 military systems and weapons like transport aircraft, light combat helicopters, conventional submarines and cruise missiles by 2024 to promote India's domestic defence industry. 
The Defence Minister announced restrictions on import of the items in accordance with the government's initiative to make India a self-reliant nation. 
The Ministry will take more steps towards indigenisation, investment in defence infrastructure and expansion in defence manufacturing capability. These steps will create big opportunities for the Indian defence industry. 
The Minister inaugurated new facilities at a number of DPSUs aimed at enhancing their existing capabilities to produce various weapons systems. This list of negative items has not only small items, but weapon systems of high and critical technology. More such items will be added to the list shortly which will save crores of rupees in imports. 
The decision to cut back the import list of weapons systems under a year-wise schedule was first announced by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in May 2020, while rolling out reform measures for the defence manufacturing sector that included increasing the FDI limit from 49 percent to 74 percent under the automatic route. 
Additional infrastructure dedicated included upgraded facilities for production of Pinaka rockets and T-90 tanks and manufacturing and testing of anti-torpedo defence system by Bharat Electronics. 
The Defence Minister also inaugurated a newly established industrial design centre of Bharat Earth Movers (BEML) at Bengaluru, Karnataka. 
The design centre is the first-of-its-kind in India, focusing on implementing factors of industrial design and human factors as part of developmental strategies for setting global benchmarking in industrial design. 
Aerospace major Hindustan Aeronautics handed over the 500th AL-31FP overhauled engine to IAF which is mounted on its most lethal frontline fighter aircraft Su-30MKI. 
New infrastructure created by Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers at its Raja Bagan dockyard in Kolkata, West Bengal, was also inaugurated. 
Bharat Dynamics is also creating infrastructure to enhance manufacturing of missile systems that will reduce import dependence. The company is enhancing capabilities for production of Akash and Astra missiles. 
Mishra Dhatu Nigam is setting up a state-of-the-art skill development centre with a focus on promoting applied research for development of materials used in aerospace, defence, nuclear, space and other strategic weapons.


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