On May 25th, Syrma CEO Sreeram Srinivasan participated in another panel discussion with other senior electronics leaders hosted by the Electronic Industries Association of India (ELCINA), spotlighting new design and manufacturing opportunities within India’s defense industries. As the Government of India continues to spearhead its Make in India initiative, offering generous incentives for domestic manufacturing, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expanding emphasis into the nation’s massive defense sector.
While India currently allocates the world’s second-largest defense budget, equivalent to $62.9 billion, the military relies upon 60% of its equipment imported from other countries. The government is now formally addressing this sizable imbalance. In accordance with the economy-boosting objectives of the Make in India campaign, the Ministry of Defense has underscored their strong preference toward homegrown military production, as outlined in two recently revised documents:
Defense Procurement Procedure: Revised in March 2016 (DPP-2016), streamlines military procurement policies and awarding of defense contracts, supporting Make in India by favoring Indigenously Designed, Developed, and Manufactured (IDDM) equipment and components versus imported materials. While bids from international defense contractors are still accepted, those products sold to the Indian military must be primarily assembled on home soil.
2018 Draft Defense Product Policy (DPrP): Sets ambitious objectives to secure India’s rank among the top 5 nations in defense and aerospace industries, 1 of 10 champion sectors, as defined by Make in India, spanning specific categories including jet fighters, helicopters, warships, missile systems, and field weapons, as well as developing advanced cyberspace and AI technology for military applications. DPrP 2018 lays out a vision of domestic defense manufacturing at $26 billion and an exports of defense equipment of $5 billion by 2025.
Boosting Indian Defense Industries
Modernizing India’s military means more than supplying brand-new equipment. Over the past decades, India purchased high volumes of military hardware from the Soviet Union. Following that superpower’s rapid dissolution at the end of the Cold War, maintaining these items, obtaining replacement units or spare parts, has become increasingly difficult. This means much of it requires extensive reengineering or refurbishment.
One example of this is Syrma’s successful development of test equipment to recalibrate Soviet-era viewfinders on Indian tanks. We expect a steady demand from similar large-scale repair and rework projects for the Indian military, and our recently expanded electronics refurbishment services offer an ideal solution for military hardware and consumer electronics alike.
As Srinivasan pointed out on the ELCINA meet, India’s strong promotion of domestic defense industries represents a tremendous opportunity for the nation’s EMS providers to help resupply and modernize the Indian military, as well as take the lead in development of state-of-the-art defense technologies for export to other nations around the globe. Syrma is poised to be a leading player in this landmark initiative, backed by our world-class engineering expertise and flexible-volume manufacturing strengths.
Backed by 40 Years of Expertise
We contribute our 40 years of design and manufacturing expertise spanning multiple diverse markets, and we look forward to discussing how we can deliver world-class products for OEMs across the globe. We understand our home India market, familiar with its vast regulatory and selling environments. We foster growth opportunities within India through our strong technology incubation ecosystem. We also assist global OEMs seeking to enter the India market by leveraging the local supply chain and favorable operating environments for cost reductions.
Our flagship Chennai location opened in 2006 and lies within a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) for electronics manufacturing, offering economic incentives for imports and exports. This primary facility is within 90 minutes of the Chennai seaport and 20 minutes to the international airport, with additional road and rail, connectivity linking to the rest of India and beyond, as well as infrastructure advantages with faster import and export clearances. We also have labor force availability, both technical and manual, to rapidly scale to client demand.
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