Outlining its major achievements in defence, the NDA government on Thursday said there were many pending issues related to defence which have been resolved and termed the clearance of proposals unprecedented. At a press conference, finance and defence minister Arun Jaitley said: “We passed One Rank One Pension (OROP) and ensured better defence procurement. We are stressing upon defence manufacturing and the strategic partnership (SP) for the same has been introduced which will supplement the procurement policy.”
“As far as defence procurement proposals are concerned, there is a particular mechanism through which decisions are taken,” he said.
Responding to a question, the minister said as far as FDI in defence is concerned, it has been liberalised in phases — 26 %, 49%, then on cutting-edge technology some changes were made. “FDI changes merely open the door — they are enabling. They themselves do not ensure the entry of participants. The reason being there is only one purchaser: the government of India. There are no two procurers,” he said.
According to Jaitley, “That is why the SP policy has been brought in; it is going to supplement the FDI policy. Whether the strategic partner comes through the FDI route or through just technological tie-up, he will be free to do so”.
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“As far as present proposals are concerned, there is under Defence Procurement Procedures (DPP), a particular mechanism by which proposals are taken. The emphasis is on defence manufacturing in the country especially in DPSUs. And the manners in which the proposals are being cleared by the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) over the last three years has been unprecedented, if you compare with the inaction of the previous years,” Jaitley said.
So far 147 contracts involving over `2 lakh crore have been signed for procurement of various equipment during the year 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17 (up to February, 2017). Also, Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has accorded ‘Acceptance of Necessity’ (AON) for 114 cases with a total value of `2,25,022 crore.