Thursday, February 21, 2019

Nirmala Sitharaman plays up defence exports

Bengaluru: The 12th edition of biennial airshow Aero India got underway on a sombre note on Wednesday with the IAF flying a special “missing man’’ formation in memory of Wg Cdr Sahil Gandhi, 37, who died when a Hawk 132 aircraft crashed during a rehearsal for the event on Tuesday.
An IAF Jaguar, Tejas LCA and a Sukhoi 30 Mki flew the special formation as a tribute to the former Sukhoi 30 pilot.

In her inaugural address, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the aerospace sector in the country is gradually moving towards being an exporter and not merely an importer.

“India is gradually emerging as a player with tremendous potential of defence exports. Some of the important achievements in this area are Dornier Aircraft Do-228 exported to Mauritius; ALH Dhruv exported to Nepal, Maldives and Mauritius; Cheetal helicopter exported to Afghanistan; Radar Warning Receiver exported to Russia; Thermal Image Fire Control System exported to Israel; and Airvan 8 to Botswana,’’ she said.
“The process of granting ‘No Objection Certificate’ for export of defence stores has been simplified. Simplification of procedures has resulted in the issue of export permissions for Rs 7,138 crore in 2018-19 (till December 2018) as against Rs 4,682 crore for the entire 2017-18. I am happy to inform that our defence exports are doubling every year in the last few years,’’ she said.

“Defence Public Sector Undertakings have been encouraged to increase their export portfolio to 25 per cent of their turnover by 2022-23,’’ Sitharaman added.
21/02/19 Indian Express