Defence ministry to ban import of 101 items in indigenisation push
10 August 2020
The Ministry of Defence on Sunday announced a list of over 100 items imports of which would be banned beyond a prescribed period of time,. defence minister Rajnath Singh said, even as he asserted that this step would move India and its defence sector closer to becoming self-reliant.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address to the Nation on 12 May 2020 had given a clarion call for a self-reliant India based on the five pillars, ie, Economy, Infrastructure, System, Demography & Demand, and announced a special economic package for self-reliant India named ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.
Taking cue from that evocation, the Department of Military Affairs (DMA) under the ministry of defence (MoD) has prepared a list of 101 items on which there would be an embargo on imports beyond the prescribed time. The DMA has indicated the timeline for ending the imports of such items.
A defence ministry release said this is a big step towards self-reliance in defence and that it offers a great opportunity to the Indian defence industry to manufacture the items in the negative list by using their own design and development capabilities or adopting the technologies designed and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to meet the requirements of the armed forces.
The list has been prepared by MoD after several rounds of consultations with all stakeholders, including the Army, Air Force, Navy, DRDO, Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs), Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) and private industry to assess current and future capabilities of the Indian industry for manufacturing various ammunition / weapons / platforms / equipment within India.
Already, the three Services have contracted almost 260 items under the schemes of such items at an approximate cost of Rs3.5 lakh crore between April 2015 and August 2020. With the latest embargo on import of 101 items, it is estimated that contracts worth almost Rs4 lakh crore will be placed on domestic industry within the next five to seven years.
Of these, the Army and the Air Force are expected to acquire items worth almost Rs1,30,000 crore each over the next five to seven years while the Navy is expected to contract for items worth almost Rs1,40,000 crore over the same period.
The list of 101 embargoed items comprises some high technology weapon systems like artillery guns, assault rifles, corvettes, sonar systems, transport aircrafts, light combat helicopters (LCHs), radars and many other items needed for the defence services. The list also includes, wheeled armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs) with indicative import embargo date of December 2021, of which the Army is expected to contract almost 200 at an approximate cost of over Rs5,000 crore.
Similarly, the Navy is likely to place orders for submarines with indicative import embargo date of December 2021, of which it expects to contract about six at an approximate cost of almost Rs42,000 crore.
For the Air Force, it is decided to enlist the light combat aircraft LCA MK1A with an indicative embargo date of December 2020. Of these, 123 are anticipated at an approximate cost of over Rs85,000 crore.
The embargo on imports is planned to be progressively implemented between 2020 and 2024. The aim is to appraise the Indian defence industry about the anticipated requirements of the armed forces so that they are better prepared to realise the goal of indigenisation. The MoD has adopted many progressive measures to encourage and facilitate ‘Ease of Doing Business’ for defence production entities. However, the defence ministry said all necessary steps would be taken to ensure that timelines for production of equipment as per the Negative Import List are met, which will include a co-ordinated mechanism for hand holding of the industry by the defence services.
The MA will over the years identify more such equipment for import embargo in consultation with all stakeholders.
Due note of this will also be made in the Defence Acquisition Procedure (DAP) to ensure that no item in the negative list is processed for import in the future.
In another relevant step, the MoD has bifurcated the capital procurement budget for 2020-21 between domestic and foreign capital procurement routes. A separate budget head has been created with an outlay of nearly Rs52,000 crore for domestic capital procurement in the current financial year.
The list of defence weapons/platforms placed under import embargo with effect from December 2020 include:
120mm Fin Stabilised Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot (FSAPDS) Mark II Ammunition; 7.62x51 Sniper Rifle; Tracked Self Propelled (SP) Gun- (155mm x 52 Cal); Towed Artillery Gun - 155mm x 52 Cal; Short Range Surface to Air Missiles - Land variant; Shipborne Cruise Missiles; Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) (Pinaka Variant); Simulators Presenting Smart Ranges And Multi-Function Targets; Battalion Support Weapons Simulators; Container-based Simulators for Live Fire Training; Tailor-made Simulators for Counter Insurgency (CI)/Counter Terrorism (CT) based Training; Force-on-force Live Tactical Simulators / Infantry Weapon; Tank Simulators (driving, as well as, crew gunnery); 155mm/39 Cal Ultra-Light Howitzer; Successor of Flycatcher & Upgraded Super Fledermaus (USFM) / Air Defence Fire Control Radar (ADFCR); Component Level Repair Facility for Tank T-90; Shipborne Close in Weapon System; Bullet Proof Jackets; Ballistic Helmets; Missile Destroyers; Multi-Purpose Vessel; Offshore Patrol Vessel; Next Generation Missile Vessels; Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Crafts; Water Jet Fast Attack Craft; Ammunition Barges; 50ton Bollard - Pull Tugs; Survey Vessels; Floating Dock; Diving Support Vessels; Pollution Control Vessels; Anti-Submarine Rocket Launchers; Shipborne Medium Range Gun; Torpedo Tube Launcher for Light Weight Torpedoes; Magneto - Rheological Anti Vibration Mounts; All variants of Depth Charges; Shipborne Sonar System for Large Ships; Hull Mounted Submarine Sonar; Short Range Maritime Reconnaissance Aircraft; Anti-Submarine Rocket; Chaff Rockets; Chaff Rocket Launcher; Integrated Ship’s Bridge System; Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) MK I A - Enhanced Indigenised Content; Light Combat Helicopters; General Purpose Pre Fragmentation Bombs between 250-500 Kg; Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) for Transport Aircraft; Ground Based Mobile ELINT System; Transport Aircraft (Light); GSAT-6 Satellite Terminals; Aerial Delivery Systems for Transport Aircraft; Digital Tropo Scatter/LOS Communication System; Low Level Transportable Radar; High Power Radar (HPR); CBRN Detection & Monitoring System; CBRN Decontamination & Protection System; Parachute Tactical Assault (PTA)- G2; Dragunov Upgrade System; PKMG Upgrade System; Simulators for A Vehicles / B Vehicles; Simulators for Towed and Self Propelled Guns of Air Defence; Simulators for Correction of Fire by Observers; Military trucks of 4x4 and above variants: 12x12, 10x10, 8x8, 6x6; Fixed Wing Mini UAVs; 500 Ton Self Propelled Water Barges; Software Defined Radio (TAC) for IN; Next Generation Maritime Mobile Coastal Battery (Long Range); Advance Landing Ground Communication Terminals (ALGCTs)for AGLs; Field Artillery Tractor (FAT) 6X6 for Medium Guns.
Embargoed from Dec 2021
Wheeled Armoured Fighting Vehicle (AFV); Light Machine Gun; 125 mm Fin Stabilised Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot (FSAPDS) New Generation Ammunition; Assault Rifle 7.62 x 39mm; 30 mm Ammunition for Infantry Fighting Systems; Mine Fragmentation; Mine Anti-tank; Mine Anti-Personnel Blast; Multipurpose Grenade; Inertial Navigation System for Ship Application; Conventional Submarines;
Embargoed from Dec 2022 onwards:
40mm UBGL (Under Barrel Grenade Launcher); Lightweight Rocket Launcher; 155 mm Artillery Ammunition; EW Systems; Material Handling Crane 2.5 to 7.5 Tons (Vehicle Mounted);
Embargoed from Dec 2023 onwards:
GRAD BM Rocket; 30MM HEI/HET; ASTRA-MK I Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile (BVR AAM); EW Suit for MI-17 V5; Communication Satellite GSAT-7C; Satellite GSAT 7R; Basic Trainer Aircraft (BTA); Expendable Aerial Targets.
Embargoed from Dec 2024 onwards:
Small Jet Engines with 120kgf thrust; Light Low Level Terrain Radar (LLLWR); Close in Weapon System (Land based); 23 mm ZU Ammunitions; 30mm VOG 17; Electronic Fuses for Artillery Ammunitions; Bi- Modular Charge System (BMCS ); Long Range – Land Attack Cruise Missile;