India awards defence contracts worth $469.5 million to local defence companies


Self-reliance in defence: In a significant boost to the local defence and aerospace companies under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Make in India initiative, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) signed five major capital acquisition contracts worth $469.5 million on Friday (March 1, 2024) in New Delhi. The contracts were exchanged in the presence of defence minister Rajnath Singh and Defence Secretary Giridhar Aramane.

The five defence contracts include one contract to the state owned aviation manufacturer HAL, and two contracts to the state owned missile manufacturer BrahMos Aerospace and another two contracts have been awarded to Indian defence company Larsen & Toubro.

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Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)

Procurement of Aero-engines for MiG-29 aircraft at a cost of $63 million. These aeroengines will be produced by the Koraput Division of HAL and are expected to fulfill the need of the Indian Air Force (IAF) to sustain the operational capability of the MiG-29 fleet for the residual service life. The aero-engines will be manufactured under Transfer of Technology (TOT) license from the Russian OEM. The programme will focus on indigenisation of several high value critical components, which would help increase the indigenous content of future Repair and Overhaul (ROH) tasks of RD-33 aero-engines.

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Photo: IAF Indian Air Force Mig-29

IAF’s Mig-29 fighter jet.

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Larsen & Toubro Limited

Procurement of Close-in Weapon System (CIWS) at a cost of $92 million. CIWS will provide terminal Air Defence to select locations of the country. The project will boost and encourage active participation of Indian aerospace, defence and associated industries including MSMEs. The direct and indirect employment generated by this project would be approximately average of 2,400 persons per year over the period of five years.

Larsen & Toubro's (L&T) High Powered Radar (HPR).

L&T’s High Powered Radar.

The Mumbai headquartered defence giant L&T also bagged another contract for supply of High-Power Radar (HPR) at a cost of $68.4 million. It will replace existing long-range radars of IAF with modern Active Aperture Phased Array based HPR with advanced surveillance features.

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It will significantly enhance the terrestrial Air Defence capabilities of IAF with integration of sophisticated sensors capable of detection of small Radar Cross Section targets. It will boost to indigenous radar manufacturing technology as it would be first of its kind radar built by the private sector in India.

The direct and indirect employment generated by this project would be approximately average of 1,000 people per year over the period of five years.

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BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited

Procurement of BrahMos missiles at a cost of $234.2 million. These missiles would be utilized to meet combat outfit and training requirements of the Indian Navy. This project is likely to generate employment of nine lakh man-days in Joint Venture entity and around 135 lakh man-days in ancillary industries (including MSMEs) of the country.

The state owned missile manufacturer, BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited also bagged another contract for supply of ship-borne BrahMos system at a cost of $11.9 million. This system is the Indian Navy’s primary weapon for maritime strike operations fitted onboard various frontline warships. The system is capable of hitting land or sea targets from extended ranges with pinpoint accuracy at supersonic speeds. The project is likely to generate employment of around 60,000 man-days over a period of 7-8 years.

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Indian Navy DRDO Brahmos Missile.

Indian Navy’s Brahmos Missile.

These deals will further strengthen indigenous capabilities, save foreign exchange, and reduce dependency on Foreign Origin Equipment Manufacturers in the future. The contracts are expected to generate significant employment opportunities in the country.

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