Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a seminar on self-reliant India in defence manufacturing through video conferencing. Emphasizing the need to become self-sufficient in defence manufacturing, the Prime Minister said that our objective is to boost defence production, develop new technology and give a significant role to the private sector in the defence sector.
The Prime Minister congratulated Defense Minister Rajnath Singh and his entire team for working as a mission and working tirelessly and said that today’s seminar will definitely give impetus to the objective of achieving self-sufficiency in defence production.
The Prime Minister said that when India became independent, there was a lot of capacity and environment available for defence production but no serious efforts were made for decades. The Prime Minister said that the situation is changing now. Constant and continuous efforts are being made to improve the defence sector. He said that several concrete steps have been taken in this direction, such as: improving the licensing process, providing equal opportunities to all, simplifying the export process, etc.
The Prime Minister said that a sense of confidence in the defence sector is essential for building a modern and self-reliant India. Decisions such as the appointment of CDS, which had been pending for decades, have now been taken and it shows the confidence of the new India. The appointment of the Chief of Defense Staff has led to better coordination and coordination among the three armies. Also, it has helped in increasing defence procurement. Similarly, he said that 74 percent FDI has been allowed in the defence sector by automatic route, which shows the confidence of the new India.
The Prime Minister said that steps such as earmarking a part of the capital budget for domestic procurement, earmarking 101 items for domestic purchase would boost domestic procurement and accelerate domestic defence industries. He also said that the government is working on the front to speed up the procurement process, streamline the testing system, etc. Speaking about the corporatisation of Ordnance Factories, the Prime Minister said that upon completion it would strengthen both workers and the defence sector.
Emphasizing the need for technology up-gradation for self-sufficiency in modern equipment, the Prime Minister said that apart from DRDO, the government is also encouraging research and innovation in the private sector and in educational institutions. The Prime Minister said that emphasis has been laid on co-production through joint ventures with foreign partners.
Highlighting that the government is working on the mantra of reform, performance and change, the Prime Minister said that major reforms are continuing in the areas of intellectual property, taxation, insolvency and bankruptcy, space and nuclear power.
In connection with the initiative taken in the infrastructure sector, the Prime Minister talked about two defence corridors in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. He said that state-of-the-art infrastructure is being constructed in collaboration with the state governments of Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. For this, an investment target of 20 thousand crores has been set in the coming 5 years.
The PM said that the IDEX initiative is also getting positive results. It was specifically launched to encourage entrepreneurs associated with MSMEs and startups. He said that through this platform, more than 50 startups have developed technology and products for military use.
The Prime Minister said that our goal is to create a capable India so that the global economy can be made more flexible and more stable and peace can be established in the world. This is the idea behind self-reliance in defence manufacturing. India has the potential to be a reliable supplier of defence equipment to all of its friendly countries. The Prime Minister said that it would strengthen India’s strategic partnership and strengthen India’s role as a ‘net security provider’ in the Indian Ocean region.
The Prime Minister said that feedback and suggestions have been received on the draft Defense Production and Export Promotion Policy which will help in implementing this policy at the earliest.
At the end of his address, the Prime Minister said that collective efforts will help us to continue the resolve to become self-reliant and to become a self-reliant India.