Defence ministry restricts import of 351 more items

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Defence ministry restricts import of 351 more items

  • Following the two positive indigenisation lists barring import of 209 major platforms and systems, the Defence Ministry notified a list of another 351 imported items to be made locally in the next three years.
  • This Atmanirbhar initiative will save foreign exchange approximately equivalent to ₹3,000 crore every year as per ministry.
  • The ministry issued a separate list of 2,500 imported items that it said had already been indigenised.

Details regarding new restriction

  • According to the notification, import restrictions on the first set of 172 items will come into force by December next year while the same provisions will be applicable on another batch of 89 components by December 2023.
  • Import restrictions on another set of 90 items will come into effect by December 2024.
  • The items included laser warning sensor, high-pressure check valve, high-pressure globe valve, drainage intrusion detection systems, various types of cables, sockets and voltage control oscillator.

Previous restrictions on import

  • The positive indigenisation list is among a series of measures announced recently to reduce defence imports and give a push to domestic manufacturing.
  • In August last year, the ministry announced that India will stop the import of 101 weapons and military platforms like transport aircraft, light combat helicopters, conventional submarines, cruise missiles and sonar systems by 2024.
  • A second list, putting import restrictions on 108 military weapons and systems such as next-generation corvettes, airborne early warning systems, tank engines and radars, was issued in May.

Significance of move

  • India is one of the largest importers of arms globally.
  • According to estimates, the Indian armed forces are projected to spend around USD 130 billion in capital procurement in the next five years.
  • The government now wants to reduce dependence on imported military platforms and has decided to support domestic defence manufacturing.
  • The Defence Ministry has set a goal of a turnover of USD 25 billion (Rs 1.75 lakh crore) in defence manufacturing in the next five years that included an export target of USD 5 billion (Rs 35,000 crore) worth of military hardware.
  • At present, India’s defence and aerospace manufacturing market was worth ₹85,000 crore, of which the present contribution of the private sector was ₹18,000 crore.
  • In 2022, the country’s defence and aerospace manufacturing market would increase to ₹1 lakh crore and could reach ₹5 lakh crore by 2047.
  • The Ministry is also expected to put out the final version of the ‘Defence Production and Export Promotion Policy (DPEPP) 2020’, the draft of which has been released for public feedback.