India has received around Rs 494 crore of foreign direct investment in the defence sector since revising the policy relating to it in September 2020, the government said in Lok Sabha on Monday. In the last few years, the government has taken a series of measures to boost domestic defence manufacturing.
In 2020, the government announced increasing the foreign direct investment (FDI) limit from 49 per cent to 74 per cent under the automatic route and up to 100 per cent through the government route in the defence sector. Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt said the total FDI inflow into the defence sector was approximately Rs 494 crore since the notification on the revised policy was issued.
“The Government vide Press Note No 4(2020 Series) dated September 17, 2020 has liberalised and allowed FDI under automatic route up to 74 per cent and up to 100 per cent through government route wherever it is likely to result in access to modern technology,” he said, replying to a question.
“Since the notification of revised FDI policy, the total FDI inflow reported till May, 2022 is approximately Rs 494 crore,” he said. India is one of the largest importers of arms globally. According to estimates, the Indian armed forces are projected to spend around USD 130 billion in capital procurement in the next five years.
The government now wants to reduce dependence on imported military platforms and has decided to support domestic defence manufacturing. To a separate question, Bhatt said the government has issued 584 defence licenses to 358 private companies for setting up of manufacturing units.
“In order to promote ‘Make in India’ in the defence sector, the government has issued 584 defence licenses to 358 private companies for setting up of manufacturing units, including 107 licenses for weapon manufacturing,” he said. “In addition, there are 16 defence public sector companies manufacturing various platforms and equipment for the armed forces,” he added.
Asked about the number of young women recruited in the National Defence Academy (NDA) in the last three years, Bhatt said 19 positions were allotted to women in the batch commencing July. “Facilities for women cadets at NDA are similar to their male counterparts. However, gender specific administrative arrangements have been catered for,” he said.