BANGALORE: Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs) in Karnataka on Friday hailed the recent guidelines on setting up new joint ventures (JVs) on public, private participation (PPP) mode. Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, while listing out the initiatives under ‘Infrastructure and Industrial Development’ in the Union Budget, said that the new guidelines would serve the dual purpose of achieving substantive self-reliance in the defence sector, in addition to facilitating production of state-of-the-art defence goods.
The Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and the Bharat Earth Movers Limited (BEML) said that the government’s decision in issuing new guidelines would henceforth hasten the formations of JVs. Speaking to Express from Chennai, BEML Chairman V R S Natarajan said the new Ministry of Defence (MoD) guidelines announced a fortnight back and now reaffirmed by the FM, is a progressive step. “It would not only help in setting up new transparency modes, but also ring in new philosophies in self-reliance. Working with Indian corporates would certainly bring out new synergy to DPSUs in addition to exposure,” Natarajan said.
Echoing Natarajan’s view was BEL Chairman Anil Kumar. According to him, the new set of JV rules for PPP model has helped erase some grey areas. “To me, it would help us forming JVs quickly. Our march towards dating state-of-the-art technologies would be faster and the self-reliance quotient would also go up,” he added.
The fresh JV plan for DPSUs opens up newer avenues to the private aerospace and defence units, of which many were reluctant to pump in massive investment with limited control over the company. The MoD seems to be now clearing all hurdles in its efforts to inspire private companies by providing a near-level playing field.HAL chief R K Tyagi was unavailable for comment.