Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday formally inaugurated the Defence Expo 2018 in Thiruvidanthai near Chennai. The tenth edition of the Defence Expo began on Wednesday. The four-day event showcases India's defence manufacturing capabilities to the world. It will see live demonstrations, flying display and seminars.
Later in the day, Modi is scheduled to attend an event in Chennai.
Def Expo India has become one of the largest events of its kind in the world over the last 10 years. The DefExpo sees participation from major defence manufacturing nations like US, UK, Russia, France, Israel, Korea, Sweden, among others. According to the Defence Ministry, over 670 defence firms, including 154 foreign manufacturers, are participating in the exhibition of weapons and military hardware.
Here are the highlights:
11:21 am: You would also recall the long-drawn process of procurement of fighter aircraft that never reached any conclusion. We have not only taken bold action to meet our immediate critical requirements, but have also initiated a new process to procure 110 fighter aircrafts: PM
11:19 am: You would have seen how the issue of providing bullet proof jackets to Indian soldiers was kept hanging for years. You would have also seen that we have brought the process to a successful conclusion with a contract that will provide a boost to defence manufacturing in India: PM
11:17 am: There was a time when the critical issue of defence preparedness was hampered by policy paralysis. We have seen the damage such laziness, incompetence or perhaps some hidden motives, can cause to the nation. Not now, Not anymore, Never again: PM
11:16 am: We have launched the ‘Innovation for Defence Excellence’ scheme. It will set up Defence Innovation Hubs throughout the country to provide necessary incubation and infrastructure support to the start-ups in defence sector: PM
11:15 am: We are committed to establishing 2 Defence Industrial Corridors: 1 in TN & 1 in UP. These will utilize defence manufacturing ecosystems in the regions & further build upon it. The corridors will become engines of economic development & growth of defence industrial base: PM
11:08 am: In May 2014, the total number of defence export permission granted stood at 118, for a total value of 577 million dollars. In less than four years, we have issued 794 more export permissions, for a total value of over 1.3 billion dollars: PM
11:07 am: The Defence Procurement Procedure has been revised with many specific provisions for stimulating growth of domestic defence industry.
We have also de-notified some items earlier made exclusively by Ordnance Factories, so that private sector, esp. MSMEs can enter this space: PM
11:06 am: Over the last few years, we have made a humble beginning. On defence manufacturing licenses, on defence offsets, on defence exports clearances, on Foreign Direct Investment in defence manufacturing, and on reforming our defence procurement, we have taken many steps: PM
11:05 am: We are conscious that defence manufacturing is unique in terms of govt. involvement. You need the govt. to grant a license to manufacture.
Since the govt. is almost the only buyer, you need the govt. to grant an order. You need the govt. even to grant permission to export: PM
11:03 am: Our commitment to peace is just as strong as our commitment to protecting our people & our territory. For this we are ready to take all necessary measures to equip our Armed Forces, including through the establishment of a strategically independent defence industrial complex: PM
11:02 am: It is wonderful to see that over 500 Indian companies & over 150 foreign companies are here. More than 40 countries have sent their official delegations as well
11:01 am: This is the land of our glorious maritime legacy. This is the land from where India Looked East and Acted East thousands of years ago
11:00 am: I am very happy to be here in the land of the great Cholas who established India's historical civilization links through trade & education: PM Modi