On Sunday (August 9, 2020), the Department of Military Affairs (DMA), under the Ministry of Defence (MoD), announced a list of 101 defence items for which there would be an embargo on the import. These 101 weapon systems and platforms will be banned from imports progressively from December 2020 to December 2025.
The MoD's announcement is a big step towards self-reliance in defence production as it is expected to offer a huge opportunity of about Rs 4,000 billion to the Indian defence industry within the next five to seven years. Of these, items worth almost Rs 1,300 billion each are anticipated for the Indian Army and the Air Force while items worth almost Rs 1,400 billion are anticipated by the Indian Navy over the same period.
The 101 defence items on import embargo list include simple parts as well as some high technology weapon systems like artillery guns, assault rifles, corvettes, sonar systems, transport aircrafts, light combat helicopters (LCHs), radars and many other items to fulfil the needs of our Defence Services. The list also includes, wheeled armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs) with indicative import embargo date of December 2021, of which the Army is expected to contract almost 200 at an approximate cost of over Rs 50 billion. Similarly, the Navy is likely to place demands for submarines with indicative import embargo date of December 2021, of which it expects to contract about six at an approximate cost of almost Rs 420 billion. For the Air Force, it is decided to enlist the light combat aircraft LCA MK 1A with an indicative embargo date of December 2020. Of these, 123 are anticipated at an approximate cost of over Rs 850 billion. Hence, there are highly complex platforms that are included in the list of 101 items.
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