First Annual General Meeting of SIDM
The Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM) recently organized its first “Annual Session – Self Reliance is Crucial for India’s Defence & Security” on 26 September 2018 at The Taj Mahal Hotel, New Delhi.
Four years ago, on 15 August, in his address from the Red Fort, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the clarion call for “Make in India”. He said, “come make in India, we have steel, we have discipline, we have resolve; sell anywhere, (but) make in India”. Among the range of opportunities, he highlighted, there was the unmissable “satellites to submarines”, implying immense potential in defence and aerospace.
The “Make in India” initiative is striving to actualise the potential. Some very forward-looking policy directions were promulgated through the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) 2016 with emphasis on “self-reliance” and “promoting MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises)”. Concomitantly foreign direct investment (FDI) norms were relaxed from 26% to 49% and up to 100% for state of art technology. The strategic partnership policy was announced in 2017. More recently, Defence Ministry simplified the industry-funded development procedure (Make-II). A new defence production policy that is under deliberation aims to achieve self-reliance in 13 systems latest by 2025. The draft policy has unambiguous targets—achieve a turnover of Rs.1.7 trillion in defence sector by 2025, with an additional investment of Rs. 70,000 Cr, creating two-three million jobs. The defence export target is set at Rs. 35,000 Cr.
Spread over a day, the recently concluded event was conducted with the abject purpose of reviewing some of the major policy changes in the defence sector and how they affect the government’s objective of being self-reliant in defence production and national security. The event had two plenary sessions. The first plenary titled ‘India: Set to be a Strong and Resilient Defence Manufacturing Hub’ brought together key stakeholders to deliberate on what needs to be done to make India a strong and resilient defence manufacturing hub. The second plenary on ‘Defence Industrial Production Corridors for Industry Friendly Military Production Policy’ facilitated the Industry to have one on one discussion with government officials from the states of Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh to understand the opportunities and incentives being offered by their respective states for defence manufacturing, by way of the upcoming Defence Industrial Corridors.
Key speakers included:
- Mr. Apurva Chandra, DG (Acquisition), Ministry of Defence, Government of India
- Dr Rajendra Kumar, Principal Secretary, Industries Commissioner and Director of Industries and Commerce, Government of Tamil Nadu
- Lt Gen S S Hasabnis, VSM, ADC, Deputy Chief of the Army Staff (P&S), Indian Army
- Air Vice Marshal B R Krishna, ACAS (Plans), Indian Air Force
- Rear Admiral Sanjay Misra, Director General of Naval Armament Inspection, Indian Navy
- Mr. Baba Kalyani, President, Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers and Chairman, Bharat Forge Limited,
- Mr. Ravindra Godbole, Additional Chief Executive officer, Utter Pradesh Expressways Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA)
- Mr. Jayant D Patil, Vice President, Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers and Whole-Time Director and Member of the Board, Larsen & Toubro Limited