- Development of Advanced Technologies for Military
- Defence Production and Export Promotion Policy
- Manufacturing Of Ultra-Modern Defence Equipment
- NITI Aayog Releases Second Edition of Export Preparedness Index 2021
- New Coach Technology
- Manufacture of Microprocessors
- Bio-Toilets by DRDO
- Export Of Defence Equipment
Development of Advanced Technologies for Military
- Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) funds directed research through its DRDO Industry Academia Centre-of Excellence (DIA-COE), in the identified research areas.
- DRDO has established 10 Centres of Excellence in collaboration with various academia institutes all over the country to develop critical technology for enabling futuristic requirements of Armed Forces.
- Technology Development Fund (TDF) Scheme also funds industries, especially start-ups and MSMEs upto an amount of Rs 10 crore for innovation, research and development of defence technologies
- Make-I procedure of Defence Acquisition Procedure (DAP) 2020 provides for financial support upto 70% of prototype development cost or maximum Rs 250 crore per Development Agency (DA).
- An innovation ecosystem for Defence titled Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) has been launched for creation of an ecosystem to foster innovation and technology development in Defence and Aerospace by engaging Industries including MSMEs, Start-ups, Individual Innovators, R&D institutes and Academia
- A Task Force has been constituted to assess the current Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities and necessary steps for inclusion of AI in Defence. Based on the recommendation of the aforesaid Task Force, Ministry of Defence created Defence AI Council (DAIC)
- DRDO also has two dedicated laboratories, Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR), Bengaluru and DRDO Young Scientist Laboratory (DYSL)-AI, Bengaluru for application oriented research in AI.
Defense Production and Export Promotion Policy
The Government has taken several policy initiatives in the past few years and brought in reforms to encourage indigenous design, development and manufacture of defence equipment in the country and to minimize the defence import by the Defence Public Sector Undertakings
- Priority to procurement of capital items from domestic sources under Defence Acquisition Procedure (DAP)-2020;
- Announcement of 18 major defence platforms for industry led design and developments;
- Notification of ‘Positive Indigenisation List’ of total 2851 items of Defence Public Sector Undertakings(DPSUs), for which there would be an embargo on the import beyond the timelines indicated against them;
- Launch of an indigenization portal namely SRIJAN to facilitate indigenisation by Indian Industry including MSMEs;
- Reforms in Offset policy with thrust on attracting investment and Transfer of Technology for Defence manufacturing by assigning higher multipliers;
- Establishment of two Defence Industrial Corridors, one each in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
- Defence Products list requiring Industrial Licenses has been rationalised and manufacture of most of parts or components does not require Industrial License
- A new online portal has been developed for facilitating filing of online applications for Industrial Licence under Industries (Development & Regulation)-IDR Act 1951/Arms Act 1959
- Government has also launched a scheme for awarding self-certification status to DPSUs and Private Industry wherein these have been delegated the responsibility of certifying the quality of products.
Manufacturing Of Ultra-Modern Defense Equipment
Government has undertaken following policy initiatives for indigenous manufacturing of state-of-the-art defence products and transfer of defence technology from foreign countries to India:-
- Specific provisions have been introduced in DAP-2020 under ‘Buy and Make (Indian)’ and ‘Buy (Global – Manufacture in India)’ category wherein indigenous production is carried out with Transfer of Technology (ToT) from foreign OEM.
- Discharge of offset obligations by foreign OEMs through ToT to Indian enterprises including government institutions has been incorporated and higher multiplier has been assigned to ToT under offset discharge.
- Government has notified the ‘Strategic Partnership (SP)’ Model which envisages establishment of long-term strategic partnerships with Indian entities through a transparent and competitive process, wherein they can tie up with global Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to seek technology transfers to set up domestic manufacturing infrastructure and supply chains.
- The Government of India has enhanced FDI in Defence Sector up to 74% through the Automatic Route for companies seeking new defence industrial license and up to 100% by Government Route wherever it is likely to result in access to modern technology or for other reasons to be recorded.
NITI Aayog Releases Second Edition of Export Preparedness Index 2021
- NITI Aayog, in partnership with the Institute of Competitiveness, released the Export Preparedness Index (EPI) 2021 today.
- report is a comprehensive analysis of India’s export achievements.
- The index can be used by states and union territories (UTs) to benchmark their performance against their peers
- The Export Preparedness Index is a data-driven endeavour to identify the fundamental areas critical for subnational export promotion.
- The EPI ranks states and UTs on 4 main pillars—Policy; Business Ecosystem; Export Ecosystem; Export Performance—and 11 sub-pillars—Export Promotion Policy; Institutional Framework; Business Environment; Infrastructure; Transport Connectivity; Access to Finance; Export Infrastructure; Trade Support; R&D Infrastructure; Export Diversification; and Growth Orientation.
- This edition has shown that most of the ‘Coastal States’ are the best performers, with Gujarat as the top-performer.
- EPI 2021 brings out three major challenges to India’s export promotion. These are intra- and inter-regional differences in export infrastructure; weak trade support and growth orientation across states; and lack of R&D infrastructure to promote complex and unique exports.
- The index can be a valuable tool for the government and policymakers in encouraging healthy competition among states and UTs, hence enhancing India’s standing in the global export market.
New Coach Technology
- Indian Railways (IR) has developed technology indigenously and manufactured Vande-Bharat trains (Train- 18).
- IR has already awarded contract for design, development, manufacture, supply, integration, testing and commissioning of IGBT based 3-Phase propulsion, control and other equipment (including Bogie assemblies) for manufacture of 44 Vande Bharat trains with improved suspension technology and energy efficiency.
- IR also plans to acquire / manufacture 400 new generation energy efficient Vande Bharat trains with better energy efficiency and passenger riding experience.
- Modern Coach Factory (MCF) / Rae Bareli has signed a ToT (Transfer of Technology) contract with M/s Dawonsys, South Korea for Design, Development, Manufacturing and Testing of Aluminium Body passenger coaches
- At present, about 750 pairs of Mail / Express trains are being operated with ICF rakes.
- As a part of Swachh Bharat Mission, Indian Railway has completed fitment of bio-toilets on all its Mainline passenger coaching stock so that no human waste is discharged from coaches on to the track.
- Further, bio-toilet with vacuum flushing system has also been developed and being fitted / retrofitted in coaches. Around 1,450 coaches have been fitted with bio-toilet with vacuum flushing system over IR.
Manufacture of Microprocessors
- Government has notified Production Linked Incentive schemes for Large Scale Electronics Manufacturing and IT Hardware which do not cover manufacturing of microprocessors.
- Government is focused on its important objective of building the overall semiconductor ecosystem and ensure that, it in-turn catalyses India’s rapidly expanding electronics manufacturing and innovation ecosystem.
- This vision of AtmaNirbhar Bharat in electronics & semiconductors was given further momentum by the approval of the Semicon India programme with a total outlay of INR 76,000 crore for the development of semiconductor and display manufacturing ecosystem in our country.
- The programme aims to provide financial support to companies investing in semiconductors, display manufacturing and design ecosystem. This will serve to pave the way for India’s growing presence in the global electronics value chains.
Following four schemes have been introduced under the aforesaid programme:
Scheme for setting up of Semiconductor Fabs in India provides fiscal support to eligible applicants for setting up of Semiconductor Fabs which is aimed at attracting large investments for setting up semiconductor wafer fabrication facilities in the country. Following fiscal support has been approved under the scheme:
- 28nm or Lower – Up to 50% of the Project Cost
- Above 28 nm to 45nm – Up to 40% of the Project Cost
- Above 45 nm to 65nm – Up to 30% of the Project Cost
Scheme for setting up of Display Fabs in India provides fiscal support to eligible applicants for setting up of Display Fabs which is aimed at attracting large investments for setting up TFT LCD / AMOLED based display fabrication facilities in the country. The Scheme provides fiscal support of up to 50% of Project Cost subject to a ceiling of INR 12,000 crore per Fab
Scheme for setting up of Compound Semiconductors / Silicon Photonics / Sensors Fab and Semiconductor Assembly, Testing, Marking and Packaging (ATMP) / OSAT facilities in India: The Scheme provides a fiscal support of 30% of the Capital Expenditure to the eligible applicants for setting up of Compound Semiconductors / Silicon Photonics (SiPh) / Sensors (including MEMS) Fab and Semiconductor ATMP / OSAT facilities in India.
Design Linked Incentive (DLI) Scheme offers financial incentives, design infrastructure support across various stages of development and deployment of semiconductor design for Integrated Circuits (ICs), Chipsets, System on Chips (SoCs), Systems & IP Cores and semiconductor linked design. The scheme provides “Product Design Linked Incentive” of up to 50% of the eligible expenditure subject to a ceiling of ₹15 Crore per application and “Deployment Linked Incentive” of 6% to 4% of net sales turnover over 5 years subject to a ceiling of ₹30 Crore per application.
In addition to the above schemes, Government has also approved modernisation of Semi-Conductor Laboratory, Mohali as a brownfield Fab.
Bio-Toilets by DRDO
The major features of bio-toilet developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) are as under:
- It makes use of an anaerobic (without oxygen) process through which the human waste is digested by consortium of bacteria.
- Bio-toilet has been customized and different designs have been developed for use under different geo-climatic conditions.
The Cow dung is used for the enrichment bacterial consortium. Following four types of bacteria are present in the consortium:
DRDO has transferred the technology to approximately 60 industries all over the country. These industries have installed bio-digesters across the country. A total number of about 16000 bio-digesters have been installed in more than 20 states. In addition, more than 2.5 lakhs bio-digesters have been installed in Indian Railways coaches, which cater to the need of more than 100 lakhs passengers on daily basis.
Export Of Defense Equipment
Many reforms/steps have been taken up by the Government to boost Defense exports and enhance ease of doing business. These are as follows:
- Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the export of munitions list items have been simplified and placed on the website of the DDP.
- A completely end-to-end online portal for receiving and processing export authorization permission has been developed. The applications submitted on this portal are digitally signed and the authorization are also issued digitally, at faster pace.
- In repeat orders of same product to the same entity, consultation process has been done away with and permission is issued immediately.
- In Intra-Company business (which is especially relevant for outsourcing of work by defense related parent company abroad to its subsidiary in India), the earlier requirement of getting End User Certificate (EUC) from the Government of importing country has been done away with and ‘Buying’ Company is authorized to issue the EUC.
- The requirement of Government signed EUC in cases of providing engineering services (ToT related to Munitions List) to Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) Countries has been dispensed with.
- Legitimate export of systems/platforms for civil end use to WA Member countries is considered subject to submission of EUC or import certificate or equivalent document issued by the Government of importing country.
- The legitimate export of the parts and components of small arms and body armour for civil use are now being permitted after prior consultation with MEA.
- For export of items for exhibition purposes, the requirement of consultation with stakeholders has been done away with (except for select countries).
- Powers have been delegated to DRDO and CMDs of DPSUs for exploring export opportunities and participation in global tenders.
- New simplified End User Certificate Format for Parts & Components has been provided in SOP.
- Validity of Export Authorization for export of Parts & Components has been increased from 02 years to date of completion of order/component whichever is later.
- A new provision for re-exporting parts and components for undertaking repair or rework to provide replacement for a component under warranty obligation is inserted in the SOP as a sub-classification of repeat orders.
- MHA has delegated its powers to Department of Defense Production to issue export license under Arms Rules 2016 for parts & components of small arms. With this the Department of Defense Production becomes the single point of contact for exporter for export of parts and components of Small Arms & Ammunitions.
- The Government has notified the Open General Export License (OGEL) – one time export license, which permits the industry to export specified items to specified destinations, enumerated in the OGEL, without seeking export authorization during the validity of the OGEL. OGEL has been integrated with end to end online Portal.
- Scheme for Promotion of Defense Exports has been notified to provide an opportunity to the prospective exporters an option to get their product certified by the Govt. and provides access to the testing infrastructure of Ministry of Defense for initial validation of the product and its subsequent field trials. The certificate can be produced by the prospective exporter for marketing their products suitably in the global market.
- A separate Cell has been formed in the Department of Defense Production to co-ordinate and follow up on export related action including enquiries received from various countries, sharing the leads with private sector & public sector companies and facilitate exports.
- In order to boost defense exports, regular webinars are being organized with Friendly Foreign Countries (FFCs) under the aegis of DDP, MoD through Indian Missions abroad and Industry Associations with active participation from Indian Defense Industries.
- A Scheme to provide financial support to Defense Attaches for taking up actions for promoting exports of India made defense products both of public and private sector in the countries to which they are attached has been notified.