New Delhi, Jan 13 (PTI) India today unveiled a newDefence Production Policy (DPrP) which aims to achieve over 50per cent indigenisation in the next decade and provides amajor role to the private sector in defence manufacturing.
"More than 50 per cent," Defence Minister A K Antony saidwhen asked about the government''s aim in terms of percentagein indigenising defence manufacturing through the new policy.
He was speaking after releasing the policy document here.
Aiming to achieve self-reliance in design, developmentand production of defence equipment, weapon systems andplatforms, the Government came out with its first DPrP.
"Self reliance is a long dream but we are still farbehind... We need to strengthen our security apparatus in viewof the prevailing security scenario, which is highly volatileand causes anxiety," he said.
He said dependence on foreign imports for nationalsecurity was "unacceptable" and through the new policy, thegovernment hoped to build a strong defence industrial base inthe country to change the situation.
The Minister said the policy, which will come in withimmediate effect, would create conducive conditions for theprivate industries to play an active role to achieve theobjective and also aims to provide them a level-playing fieldin the sector.
Antony said from now on, preference will be given toindigenous design, development and manufacture of defenceequipment coming from both public and private sectors.
"Wherever the required arms, ammunition and equipment arepossible to be made by the Indian industry within the timelines required by the Services, the procurement will be madefrom the indigenous sources," he said.
The Minister said in cases where the Indian industry isnot in a position to make and deliver the equipments in therequisite time frame, procurement from foreign sources wouldbe resorted to as per the DPrP.
Based on the approved Long Term Integrated PerspectivePlan (LTIPP), equipment, weapon systems and platforms requiredten years and further down the line will by and large bedeveloped within the country, Antony said.
However, the new policy allows sub-systems that are noteconomically viable or practical to be made within thecountry, to be imported and calls for ensuring that they areavailable at all times.
To assess the self reliance achieved through the year,the Defence Minister will hold an annual review of theprogress made.
Under the DPrP, a separate fund will be created toprovide necessary resources to public and private sector aswell as academic and scientific institutions to supportresearch and development of defence products.
"Our endeavour will be to build a robust indigenousdefence industrial base by proactively encouraging largerinvolvement of the Indian private sector in design,development and manufacturing of defence equipment," he added.
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To match the global standards in the defence sector in terms of price and time lines, the policy also allows theformation of consortia, joint venture and public privatepartnerships within the government approved framework.
It also seeks the involvement of academia, research anddevelopment institutions, technical and scientificorganisations of repute for achieving the objective.
The DPrP has been prepared after consultations withvarious stakeholders such as the three Services, IntegratedDefence Staff, DRDO and various chambers of commerce.
Reacting to the new policy, Confederation of IndianIndustries (CII) said, "We appreciate the policy acknowledgingthat private sector would have to play a larger role indefence production. We anticipate that an implementation roadmap with benchmarks would be announced sooner."
The other major chamber FICCI said policy-making DefenceMinistry officials should be removed from the boards ofDefence PSUs and they "should be corporatised and publiclylisted to increase their public accountability and bring themon par with private sector producers." PTI AJD