India needs PLI for drone design: Paras Aerospace CEO | Mint

India needs PLI for drone design: Paras Aerospace CEO

Pankaj Akula, CEO of Paras Aerospace.
Pankaj Akula, CEO of Paras Aerospace.

Summary

  • A design PLI will also boost the domestic intellectual property holdings of Indian companies, Paras Aerospace CEO Pankaj Akula said

NEW DELHI : India needs a PLI scheme for drone designing, said Pankaj Akula, CEO of Paras Aerospace.

While the importance of drones in warfare and national security has increased, India remains behind powers like Turkey and Iran, Akula said in an interview.

The ongoing Russia-Ukraine war has seen the extensive use of Iranian-made Shahed drones. In 2020, Turkish-supplied drones were seen as a key factor in Azerbaijan’s victory over Armenia.

A design linked incentive scheme, paired to the existing incentive scheme for drones and subcomponents unveiled in 2021, could help bolster domestic development.

“Before production happens, what has been missed out is basically DLI or design linked incentive. If you look at the ministry of electronics, they have launched a design linked incentive for all the IP designs on chips and processors. So any industry first starts with the design incentive and then we can go to the production incentive," said Akula, a former government scientist.

Paras Aerospace is a subsidiary of Paras Defence & Space Technologies.

A design PLI will also boost the domestic intellectual property holdings of Indian companies, which will help shore up their position vis-a-vis global competitors, Akula said.

Akula, whose firm is interested in producing drones for both defence and commercial applications, believes that a restrictive regulatory regime and underwhelming support for defence research programmes have led to the underdevelopment of India’s capacity in the field.

However, he remains confident that India will hit the government’s target of a 3 trillion domestic drone industry by 2030.

The ministry of civil aviation has announced plans to make the country a “global drone hub" by 2030.

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