Defence corridor in Tamil Nadu to see Rs3,100 cr investment

The five nodes of Tamil Nadu Defence Industrial Corridor, viz, Chennai, Coimbatore, Hosur, Salem and Tiruchirapalli, will see investment of approximately Rs3,100 crore by Ordnance Factory Board (OFB)/defence public sector undertaking (DPSUs) and private industries, minister of state for defence Shripad Naik informed the Rajya Sabha in a written reply today.

The Union Budget for 2018-19 had announced plans to set up two defence industrial corridors in the country - one in Uttar Pradesh and another in Tamil Nadu.  
Till date, six consultation meetings of stakeholders in Tamil Nadu were organised across various nodes, the minister said. Further, the government has also appointed a consultant for the preparation of detailed project report for these two defence corridors, he said.
Setting up of Tamil Nadu Defence Industrial Corridor would catalyse indigenous production of defence and aerospace related items, thereby reducing the country’s reliance on imports while also promoting export of these items to other countries. This will lead to generation of direct and indirect employment opportunities and growth of private domestic manufacturers, including micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and start-ups, the minister added.
Replying to another question in the House, Naik said that as per available figures, defence budget as a percentage of GDP may appear to be decreasing due to increasing trend in the growth of GDP. However, it is increasing in absolute terms, implying higher spending. In the 2019-20 budget, total defence budget (including miscellaneous and pensions) is Rs4,31,010.79 crore, for the year 2019-20, which is 15.47 per cent of total central government expenditure. In BE 2019-20, capital budget of ministry of defence is approximately 31.97 per cent of the total capital expenditure of the central government expenditure.
The expenditure on operations/ maintenance and defence infrastructure has been maintained optimally, he said.