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'Make in India' crucial for defence production: Jaitley

ANI  |  New Delhi [India] 

Highlighting the importance of being self-sufficient in the defence production sector, Minister of Defence, and Corporate Affairs said that the defence sector needs to be a key area of focus with regards to Prime Minister Modi's 'Make in India' initiative.

"is one of the largest importers of defence equipment in the world, and this definitely is not a label we are happy with," he said, addressing the inaugural session at the ongoing India-Military Industrial Conference here today.

Jaitley stressed on the relations with being at the crux of India's foreign policy. The Minister further said that since the signing of the India-Strategic Partnership in 2000, ties between the two sides have acquired new heights with enhanced level of cooperation in almost all areas including defence.

"India-Russia Military Technical Cooperation has graduated from a simple buyer-seller relation to one involving joint research, development and production of advanced defence systems. The Brahmos Missile System and production of SU-30 in are examples of such flagship cooperation. There is tremendous potential for collaboration between Indian and Russian companies for export, so as to become part of the global supply chain," Jaitley said in his address.

The conference was also attended by foreign dignitaries such as the Minister for Industry and Trade of Russian Federation, Denis Manturov and others. About 150 representatives from Russia participated in the conference. From India, over 100 private companies including several SMEs were present.

Organised by the Department of Defence Production in the Ministry of Defence, the conference aims at addressing issues related to life-cycle support and maintenance of major Russian-origin equipments/ platforms such as SU-30 MKI aircraft, Mi-17 Helicopters, MiG-29K aircraft, INS Vikramaditya and T-90 tanks.

The conference will provide an opportunity to the Indian industry to explore possibilities of manufacturing of parts/ components of Russian equipment in through partnerships with Russian companies.

The conference was flagged off with two agreements being signed between Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and United Aircraft Corporation and United Engine Corporation of Russia, for general terms and conditions governing long term supply of spares and rendering technical assistance over five years for the Su -30 MKI aircraft.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, March 17 2017. 20:35 IST