Rajnath Singh invites defence companies to participate in DefExpo
New Delhi, October 26, 2021
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday invited defence companies across the world to participate in DefExpo, Asia’s largest defence exhibition scheduled to be held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat from March 10-13, 2022.
Chairing the Ambassadors’ Round Table for DefExpo 2022, in New Delhi, Rajnath Singh said India was open to conducting business on a mutually beneficially collaborative basis for all-round welfare. The Round Table was held to brief the Ambassadors of foreign missions about the planning, arrangements and other details of DefExpo 2022.
More than 200 delegates, including Ambassadors, Heads of Missions and Defence Attaches attended the Round Table, reflecting the growing global interest in the Indian defence space, the Ministry of Defence said in a press release.
Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal V R Chaudhari, Secretary (Defence Production) Raj Kumar and other senior officials of Ministry of Defence and Gujarat Government were also present at the meeting.
The Minister exuded confidence that DefExpo 2022 will bring all the latest technologies under one roof and provide a myriad of opportunities to the stakeholders in the aerospace and defence industry.
“Resurgent India, where defence manufacturing is an identified pillar of growth, will display its ability to take lead at DefExpo 2022. I am confident that, pursuing the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, DefExpo-2022 will sow the seeds of successful new ventures and international partnerships to promote shared prosperity, boost investment, expand manufacturing and bolster the aerospace and defence ecosystem in India, which shall be ready to serve the defence requirements of our friendly countries also,” he added.
He said DefExpo 2022 aims to further the benchmark of its previous editions with a greater presence of foreign and Indian exhibitors, OEMs and foreign countries. “We are committed to supporting the partnerships that have been forged thus far as also form newer bonds for mutual growth.”
DefExpo 2022 will provide an overview of what India has been able to achieve in terms of defence R&D and production, application of modern technologies, liberalised collaborative policies introduced by the Government in the last seven years.
Saying that the Government is committed to furthering the defence business interests through synergistic growth, he expressed confidence that increased international participation will lead to the development of mutually advantageous relationships between India and other countries.
The Indian aerospace and defence manufacturing sector was ready to soar to newer heights and it has the potential for R&D in space, cyberspace, futuristic capabilities and disruptive technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Virtual Reality, 3D Printing, Digital Frontier and Internet of Military Things, he added.
Reaffirming the Government’s resolve to modernise the Armed Forces and make a strong & self-reliant defence industry, Rajnath Singh said various measures have been taken by the Government, including increasing defence capital outlay in the annual budget of 2021-22 by 18.75 % from the preceding year, which is the highest ever increment in the last 15 years.
Other policy reforms include simplifying the industrial licensing process; allowing 74% Foreign Direct Investment through automatic route and 100% with Government approvals for critical technologies; introduction of Open General Export License policy; positive indigenisation lists of 209 items; launch of seven new defence companies and opening up of testing & trial facilities for the private sector etc. The reforms in defence manufacturing are attracting greater interest from Indian and foreign defence manufacturers, innovators, MSMEs.
He appreciated the efforts of the Indian defence industry and thanked the foreign aerospace and defence companies for investing in the Indian defence growth story. “It is because of the collaborative efforts of entities from all over the world that our defence exports have grown by 334% in last five years and now India is exporting to more than 75 countries. Our export performance is a strong indicator of the quality and competitiveness of our defence products,” he said.
He reiterated the Government’s commitment to the collective security system laid down in Chapter VII of the UN Charter which deals with action concerning threats to peace, breach of peace and acts of aggression. “As a responsible nation, we wish to ensure a stable international security system through these collaborations and efforts,” he said.
The Minister also launched DefExpo 2022 website (www.defexpo.gov.in). The website provides online services to exhibitors, besides hosting informative content about the various indigenous defence products and tourism, arts and crafts of Gujarat.
The website is an enabler for exhibitors to register and book space online on a first-come-first-serve basis, make online payments, book conference halls and venues for business-to-business (B2B) meetings.
Trade visitors will be able to buy their tickets from the website for visiting the show during business days i.e. March 10 and 11, 2022. Free entry is planned for the general public on March 12 and 13.