NEW DELHI: In an attempt to woo foreign defence players as Boeing, Airbus and Lockheed Martin to explore business opportunities in India, the BJP led NDA government on Monday took several steps to boost defence manufacturing.
In order to provide a level-playing field to private players, the government withdrew excise and Customs duty exemptions enjoyed by the Ordnance Factory Board and defence PSUs.
“This will provide a level-playing field... by taking away the strategic advantage of PSUs for quoting lower rates in open bids. With this initiative, the government has also fulfilled the demands of foreign Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) such as Boeing, Airbus, Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems etc which are actively exploring the scope of future investments in India,” a Commerce and Industry Ministry statement read.
The Indian aerospace and defence market is among the most attractive globally as the country is the highest importer of defence items in the world, it added.
The government has systematically opened up the sector for private investment by increasing the FDI cap in defence to up to 49 per cent and rationalising certain conditions.
Almost 60 per cent items required for industrial licence have now been de-reserved. Defence manufacturing is one of the key sectors among the 25 sectors identified under Make-in-India.