The economic and strategic significance of Indian defence sector is growing day by day due to the dynamically volatile geopolitical situations prevailing at global as well as regional sphere. Keeping the upward movement of the intensity of security threats in mind, it is indispensible for India to maintain a highly modernized defence system capable of meeting any security challenges in order to safeguard its national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Prior to 2001, the Indian defence industrial base was mainly led by public sector. But realizing the need of meaningful engagement of private sector to attain self-reliance in defence preparedness, the defence industry was opened for 100% private sector participation May 2001. Presently, India is 2nd largest net importer of defence equipments. India is also among the world’s top five defence spenders. The defence budget for 2017-18 is to the tune of Rs. 2,74,114 crore in which Rs. 86,448 crore accounts for capital expenditure. Current defence policies are aimed at attaining indigenization and self-reliance in the sector.
FICCI advocates the synergetic engagement of both public and private sector in the defence sector development. FICCI’s defence desk has been consistently working on the issues and policies related to Indian defence sector. It played a pivotal role in the evolution of a holistic defence policy framework conducive for the integration of public sector, private sector and users through its participation and contribution at Kelkar committee where Dr. Amit Mitra, then Secretary General, FICCI was a member. FICCI over the years has been endeavouring to create a robust Defence Industrial Base within the country, and a successful and seamless partnership between the Ministry of Defence, Armed Forces, DRDO, Academia, Foreign OEMs and the Indian Industry (both Public and Private).
The key objectives of the Defence desk at FICCI are:-
- Creating a level playing field for all industry players
- Appraising the industry concerns to the government and ensuring timely policy reforms required for creating a better investment atmosphere
- Striving to create a vibrant Indian defence industrial base based on indigenous skill and technology
- Identification of major challenges as well as opportunities of defence sector to ensure growth
- Striving for the optimal utilization of defence offset policies to minimize import dependency
Striving to make India one of the top defence producers of the world with export capacity
With a highly dedicated team, the FICCI Defence & Aerospace team is actively engaged in:-
- Capturing the trend of Indian as well as global defence related policies from time to time
- Interfacing actively with the Ministry of Defence, DRDO and the armed services (Army, Navy and Air force) on concerns and participation of the industry
- Suggesting policy recommendations to the government for reform of defence sector and modernization of armed forces
- Regular interaction with government, users (i.e. armed forces) as well as private sector organizations involved in defence R&D, production and trade
- Comparative study of defence policies of different nations and that of India
- Providing timely information and productive suggestions to the members and other stake holders
- Identifying new issues and accordingly expand the desk’s scope of work to meet the changing security environment from time to time
- Conducting regular defence related business networking functions, seminars and conferences where all major players participate to discuss on the emerging issues, share their views, find out innovative solutions to any existing or emerging challenges
- Interaction with the visiting delegations
- Participating in international shows in defence sector
- Participate and contribute in the High Technology Cooperation Group (HTCG) and Defence Procurement & Production Group ( DPPG) forums with the US Government and Industry