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India bans import of 101 Defence items, gives big push for ‘Make in India’
The Defence Minister on August 9 announced that the Defence Ministry has decided to ban the import of 101 defence items ‘beyond the given timeline’ in order to boost the indigenous production as per PM Modi’s vision of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.
As per the Defence Minister, with this move, the domestic industry will receive contracts worth Rs. 4 lakh crores within the next six to seven years as the embargo will be implemented in phases between 2020 and 2024.
The decision by the government will offer an opportunity to the domestic defence industry to manufacture the items by using their own designs and development capabilities or even adopting the technologies designed and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to meet the requirements.
Banned defence items on the list: Key Highlights
• Almost 260 schemes of such items have been contracted by the tri-services at an approximate cost of Rs. 3.5
lakh crores between April 2015 and August 2020.
• Items worth almost Rs. 1,30,000 crores have been anticipated for the Indian Army and Air Force and items worth
Rs. 1,40,000 crores have been anticipated by the Navy over the same period.
• The list includes high technology weapon systems such as assault rifles, artillery guns, sonar systems,
corvettes, light combat helicopters, transport aircraft, radars, and many other items.
• As per the Defence Ministry, the list also includes wheeled Armoured Fighting Vehicles (AFVs) with an embargo
date of December 2021, of which the Indian Army is expected to contract almost 200 AFVs at an approximate cost
of over Rs. 5,000 crores.
• The Indian Navy is also likely to place demands for submarines with an indicative embargo date of December
2021, of which it expects of contracting about six, the approximate cost of which will be almost Rs. 42,000
• For the Indian Air Force, it has been decided to enlist the LCA MK 1A with an indicative embargo date of
December 2020. Of these, 123 have been anticipated at an approximate cost of over Rs. 85,000 crores.
Preparing for indigenous production of Defence Items
As per the Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh the list of the banned items has been prepared by the Defence Ministry after the consultations with all the stakeholders including Public and Private industry, in order to assess the current and future capabilities of the Indian Industry for manufacturing various ammunition and equipment in India.
As the embargo on the import has been planned to be implemented between 2020 to 2024, the Defence Ministry’s aim is to apprise the Indian Defence Industry about the requirements of Armed Forces so that they are also better prepared to realize the goal of indigenization.
Ministry of Defence has also bifurcated the capital procurement budget for 2020-2021 between foreign and domestic capital procurement routes.
A separate budget head has been created which has an outlay of nearly Rs. 52,000 crores for domestic capital procurement for the current financial year.
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