Govt, industry need to work together to develop defence equipment tech: Minister
The government, industry, R&D establishment and the academia have to come together to evolve technologies in defence equipment for Indian requirements, said Subhash Bhamre, Minister of State for Defence.
The Minister was speaking at a symposium on ‘Defence Industry Indigenisation: Opportunities and Challenges’, organised by the Mahratta Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA) in Pune.
He said, in terms of production and marketing of defence equipment, the market is limited. Hence, a huge thrust is required to boost exports. “To be able to make a dent in the export market we require quality equipment that is cost competitive,” Bhamre said.
The symposium aimed at providing a platform for interaction between the defence segment and industry to boost cooperation between the two.
Pradeep Bhargava, President, MCCIA, and Baba Kalyani, Chairman, Kalyani Group, were among those present on the occasion. “Over the past few years I have traversed across the country in order to understand the difficulties that our defence industry, especially the MSMEs, face. The defence sector has a few requirements. Firstly, sophistication in design is an extremely important issue. Technology upgradation is extremely rapid and cost of importing technology is very expensive. The latest technology, more often than not, is not easily available. Hence, the government, industry, R&D establishment and the academia have to come together to evolve Indian technologies for Indian requirements,” said Bhamre.
Pradeep Bhargava said, “India always had an agenda of no private sector manufacturing for defence even as we imported a lot of equipment from private companies in other countries. This has slowly changed and today there are initiatives like ‘Make in India’, ‘Start-up India’ which will help in defence industry indigenisation”. Baba Kalyani said: “During the end of 2014, Indian manufacturing had reduced to 15.5 per cent from 17 per cent which created a lot of turbulence in the ability to create jobs and technology. Hence, indigenisation needs to be a national endeavour.”