Lauding the government’s achievements in last five years, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday said with focused defence policy the public and private defence industry have been able to achieve major milestones in the defence and aerospace segment.
Speaking at the inauguration of 12th edition of Aero India here, Ms Sitharaman said, “Some of the major achievements of Public and Private defence industry, I want to put before you include 155 MM 52 caliber self propelled howitzer guns, advanced towed artillery guns, high altitude UAVs, commissioning of indigenous scorpene INS Kalvari, development of two indigenous ATGMs, upgradation of air defence guns L 70, LCA Tejas 2, integrated air command control system, Akash missile system and so on.”
Just before the inauguration of the show, two minutes silence were kept in mark of paying respect to Wing Commander Sahil Gandhi.
During Suryakiran rehearsal event on Tuesday, two Hawk helicopters collided on in which he was fatally injured.
With making ease of doing business simpler and hassle free, huge number of companies obtained license for defence manufacturing.
“There are now more than 424 companies which have obtained the license for defence production. This number has almost doubled over the last four years,” she added.
On FDI, she said, “Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) upto 49 per cent were allowed through automatic route and above 49 per cent we go through the government route. But a significant FDI growth in defence and aerospace sector have been witnessed. During 2014-18, six companies in defence and aerospace sector obtained government approval for FDI of Rs 237 crore while FDI of Rs 200 crore has been received through the automatic route.”
The minister also highlighted the defence equipment India exported to its friendly nations.
“The potential of defence exports is an important area that I would like to highlight. Some of the achievements in this area are Dornier 228 aircraft exported to Mauritius, ALH Dhruv exported to Nepal, Maldives and Mauritius again. Cheetal helicopter exported to Afghanistan, radar warning receiver exported to Russia, thermal image fire control system exported to Israel, airgram H2 to Botswana. These achievements are possible due to focused defence export policy which is usually for the promotion of defence expos, export promotion body, online portal and also process of granting no objection certificates for export of weapons….,” said Ms Sitharaman.
The five-day biennial Aero India show kicked off on Wednesday, where 63 aircraft are participating while a total of 403 exhibitors are taking part that include 232 Indian companies.