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New Delhi: Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard (ICG) are being equipped with indigenous ships and weapons to protect the maritime borders of the country, said defence minister Rajnath Singh.

Addressing the meeting of Consultative Committee for Ministry of Defence on ‘Defence Shipyards’, the minister said that efforts are taken to strengthen Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard as ensuring national security is the government’s top priority.

Singh added that the defence shipyards play a crucial role in this direction. “They have ensured timely delivery and quality of products, which is pivotal for building a strong military. They are striving to realise Prime Minister Modi’s vision of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’. The government has taken a number of initiatives to encourage indigenous manufacturing of weapons/ products and minimise imports by DPSUs. They include notification of Positive Indigenisation Lists comprising Major Line Replacement Units/Sub-systems and Srijan portal."

He said that the Srijan portal was launched on August 14, 2020 to promote indigenisation. “As on September 30, 2022, there are 783 items of shipyards on the portal. These items were earlier imported and their indigenous vendors were not available. The shipyards have, so far, been able to successfully indigenise 73 items from the list. Indigenisation efforts for the remaining items are in progress in collaboration with industry partners."

The minister added that the defence shipyards strengthen the country’s economy. “During 2021-22, the Value of Production of these shipyards was 8,925 crore and Profit After Tax was 928 crore. Presently, the order book position of these shipyards is 81,777 crore."

Singh said that procurement through Government e Marketplace (GeM) is increasing in the shipyards. “It has provided a boost to domestic products and ensured transparency in procurement. The shipyards have been asked to increase procurement through GeM and a target has been to make 25 percent of the total procurement from MSMEs."

He added that soon the shipyards will not only meet the domestic requirements, but also earn export orders on a competitive basis. “These shipyards will continue to adapt themselves to the changing environment and achieve the desired results. Friendly countries have appreciated the quality of the platforms manufactured by these shipyards."

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Swati Luthra

Swati Luthra writes on climate change, water, environment and forest issues for Mint. A graduate in Psychology, Swati has been mapping India’s policy initiatives to help meet the pledges made at CoP-26 including achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2070.
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