Needs policy clearance to export

“There is huge potential to export missiles made in India. Several countries have evinced interest but we need a policy clearance from the Central Government,” Avinash Chander, Scientific Adviser to Defence Minister and Chief of Defence Research and Development Organisation, has said.

Speaking at an event hosted by the Aeronautical Society of India here late on Saturday, he said “We have received enquiries for supply of missiles. These cover different types including Akash, Brahmos and some others. Indian weapons supplies are globally competitive and we can do well in terms of missile exports once there is clearance,” he said.

Indian weapons can be attractive globally as we can produce them very competitively, he explained.

Refraining to name the countries who might buy such missiles, he said it takes about one and a half year to begin supplies once clearance is accorded.

Apart from missiles that go beyond 50 km, surface to air missiles that go beyond 200 km, ship launchers and cruise missiles would also have lot of export potential. Indian weapons could be offer at about 50-60 per cent less cost than their global counterparts. It would be one-fourth cost in the case of strategic systems.

The DRDO official said they had embarked on a ‘Missile Autonomy Mission’ in order to be self reliant in most missile requirements.

Few years ago, the indigenisation level in defence systems was about 30 per cent. And an analysis of various defence procurements of the last six to seven years had shown that 50 per cent of them were indigenous. The indigenisation level is projected to go up to 70 per cent.

The Light Combat Aircraft project would contribute about Rs.40,000 crore in terms of procurement. It was proposed to step up its production to 16 per year to meet the requirements of the Indian Air Force.

He said that the Government had accorded clearance for development of Regional Civilian Aircraft. Now we are looking at the possibility of converting the project into transport, civil cum multi-purpose aircraft project, he said.

(This article was published on June 15, 2014)
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