Prime Minister Narendra Modi said during the inauguration of Aero India's 14th edition that India's defence exports are on track to more than triple from the present $1. 5 billion to $5 billion by 2024–25, which is building a path from being the world's top importer to exporting equipment to 75 countries.
The first indigenously designed and built aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant, the largest helicopter factory in Asia in Tumakuru, Karnataka, and the nation's first armoured systems complex constructed by a private company in Surat were cited by Modi as examples of the potential of an independent India eager to take flight and seize opportunities abroad.
Aero India showcases India’s self-confidence
PM Modi said, “From here, India will take rapid strides to be counted among the largest defence manufacturers, and our private sector and investors will play a big role in that.” He urged industry to invest and create opportunities within the country and beyond.
"Aero India's deafening roar reflects the phrase "reform, perform, and transform" that represents India. The world is aware of the reforms implemented to make doing business easier, to improve the defence industry's FDI and other sectors, and to streamline the procedures for issuing licences to industries while simultaneously lengthening the validity of those licences, he added.
Indigenous systems to combat future battles
The Chief of army staff (COAS), General Manoj Pande, stated that developing fully indigenous systems to combat future battles is still a work in progress. "What I want to emphasise is that in eight to ten years, we will be able to fight future wars with fully indigenous systems thanks to the kind of environment we have and the capability civil defence firms have."
Initially, he said, the army is looking at empowering infantry soldiers by increasing their situational awareness, providing better surveillance systems and small arms weapon systems and enhancing their fighting capabilities at night.