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Defence sector needs a finance corporation like IRFC: HAL’s ex-CMD

With Defence Corridors planned in Tamil Nadu and UP, other initiatives of the government, opportunities will abound and we will need more money than ever, he said
Bengaluru: Considering the huge potential of industrial growth in defence and aerospace (both civil and military) and challenges of meeting the financial needs for mega aviation projects in India, it is important to think of establishing an organisation like Indian Defence Finance Corporation (IDFC) on the lines of Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC), said Dr RK Tyagi, Chairman of Aeronautical Society of India (AeSI) and former Chairman of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

‘Sector needs money’

“With Defence Corridors planned in Tamil Nadu and UP, other initiatives of the government, opportunities will abound in these sectors and we will need more money than ever,” he said while speaking at a seminar on ‘Energising Indigenisation in Aerospace and Defence’ organised by AeSI and the Society of Indian Technologies and Industries (SIATI).

‘Opportunities to abound in civil aviation sector’

On the civilian front, India will need at least additional 1,000 aircraft which means the country will buy two aircraft per week in the next few years and our industries must take advantage of such a situation by developing indigenous civil aircraft to ensure success of the government’s Regional Connectivity Schemes like UDAN, said Dr Tyagi. “The future belongs to technology and the use of Artificial Intelligence and robots will be more pronounced,” he added.

‘Indigenous aircraft tend to be costlier because of material cost’

Shekhar Srivastava, CEO (Bangalore Complex, HAL), pointed out that material cost incurred drives up the cost of indigenous Indian products especially when one is dependent on foreign OEMs, thus making the finished products unviable. It is therefore important that all stakeholders come together and find solutions for any indigenisation process to succeed, he said.