June 18, 2014

‘Missile export potential is huge’

“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, 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.”
Indian weapons can be attractive globally as we can produce them very competitively, he explained.
Refraining from naming the countries, which 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 offered at about 50-60 per cent less cost than their global counterparts. It would be one-fourth the cost in case of strategic systems.
Missile autonomy
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. An analysis of various defence procurements of the last six to seven years shows 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 ₹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 the Regional Civilian Aircraft. “Now we are looking at the possibility of converting the project into transport, civil cum multi-purpose aircraft project,” he said.

The Hindu

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