Looking at the road ahead for the post-lockdown period, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday held a detailed meeting on the defence industry in the country and initiatives that can help the economy recover.
The government said in a statement that the “detailed meeting” was 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 statement mentioned that reform of Ordnance factories, streamlining procurement procedures and focused resource allocation were discussed. Deliberations were also held on how to encourage research and development, innovation to attract investment in critical defence technologies and promotion of exports.
The government said 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” and reviewed “proposed reforms for attracting domestic and foreign investment in defence sector”, according to the statement.
The meeting attended by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Home Minister Amit Shah and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and senior officials also discussed the need to economise defence expenditure to use the savings for “strategic defence capital acquisition”, it said.
They also spoke on defence procurement processes, offset policies, indigenisation of spares, transfer of technology, attracting global manufacturers to establish manufacturing facilities and expanding India’s presence in international supply chains, the statement said.
Modi reiterated that the country should reduce dependence on imports and push Make in India “to build its domestic capabilities for designing, developing and manufacturing state-of-the-art defence equipment”, it added.
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