SIDM Annual Session on 'Self-Reliance is Crucial for India’s Defence & Security'
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 actualize 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.
It is with this background, Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM) organised its “Annual Session – Self Reliance is Crucial for India’s Defence & Security” on 26 September 2018 at The Taj Mahal Hotel, New Delhi. The Annual had two plenaries focusing on “India: Set to be a Strong and Resilient Defence Manufacturing Hub” and “State Governments Incentivise Defence Industries”.
Notable dignitaries who attended included DG (Acquisition), Ministry of Defence; Deputy Cheif of the Army Staff (P&S); DG (PC & SI), DRDO, as well as Industry Secretaries of Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh.