Updated: December 19, 2021 4:33:34 am
INDIA HAS told friendly countries like the US, Russia and France that defence equipment for the country should be made within India now, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Saturday. He mentioned that India cannot remain dependent on other nations for its security needs.
Speaking at the annual convention of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Singh said, “Because of India’s stature, geographic location and the security challenges facing the country, we cannot remain dependent on other nations for defence technologies. We all understand this truth.”
“Our capability and capacity will not be prepared with the intention to attack anyone, but our objective is to give a befitting response to any ill-intentioned actions of an adversary.”
Singh said that “most of the countries in the world are India’s friends” and mentioned that recently senior delegates from the US, Russia and, a day ago, France’s Defence Minister had visited. “I have told all the friendly nations, that keeping in mind India’s security, we want to manufacture all defence equipment within India now.”
Commenting about the challenges posed by the country’s western and northern neighbours, Pakistan and China respectively, Singh said, “God has given us some neighbours who aren’t happy with India’s prosperity.”
Speaking about the government’s push for the domestic defence manufacturing industry, Singh said, “We are asking the world to come make in India, make for India and to make for the world.” Several international defence companies want to come and manufacture their products in India, he said, and added their arrival will create a defence ecosystem in the country.
Mentioning the positive indigenisation list, as per which over 200 systems won’t be allowed to be imported, Singh said it will go beyond 1,000 within a decade. “Keeping the potential of the defence and aerospace industries in mind, the government has brought reforms to several policies to encourage indigenisation, development and design.”
Defence and aerospace sector is worth around Rs 85,000 crore, which Singh said he believes will touch Rs 1 lakh crore in 2022. He said he wants the sector to be worth Rs 5 lakh crore by 2047. The government’s vision is to make India a global manufacturing hub for defence, he said.
He also stated that the government wants the country’s defence exports to touch Rs 35,000 crore by 2024-2025, and the country will become a net exporter of defence systems.
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