According to defense sources, India has come out with a list of 152 items that are available to friendly nations as part of its plan to expand its current $11 billion defense base to $25 billion by 2025. The defense base will consist of $5 billion as an export component.
The list, including 85 kinds of equipment and 47 sub-systems, has been created to meet the requirements of the countries in the Indian Ocean Region and Africa. Some of the top items included in the list are Brahmos supersonic cruise missiles, the Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS), Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launchers, and the Combat Management System.
The list was released by the Department of Defence Production during the Aero India air show last week. Indigenous MBT Arjun and Astra air-to-air missiles have not been included in the list. However, both of these were included in a separate list put out by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
The list also includes military equipment from private-sector manufacturers that haven’t been inducted into the Indian armed forces. Based on this interest, India can also look at different financing options, including extended Line of Credits, the sources said
Defense attaches posted in IOR and African countries were asked last year to prepare a set of requirements that could be fulfilled through Indian-made systems. The most interest has been shown in the Light Combat Aircraft Tejas, helicopters, and missile systems, according to defense sources.
.The defense attaches will promote Indian systems during interactions with their foreign counterparts, and also keep an eye out for possible tenders. This is besides the effort being put in by the Indian private sector. There are 30 land systems mentioned in the list. Chief among them are the Akash, BrahMos missiles, and artillery guns.
According to a report, India is offering its Akash SAM batteries for defending vulnerable points in friendly airspace against penetrating targets at low, medium, and high altitudes. The Akash missile has an effective range of 3-25 km and can operate at an altitude of 300 m to 18 km.
In addition to this, the BrahMos missile has also been cleared for export. As of now, India is offering 290 km-range missiles which are currently being sought after by countries like the Philippines and Vietnam.
As for the artillery guns, the defense ministry has included the ATAGS and K-9 Vajra howitzer, apart from the 155mm/52 Caliber towed gun and Garuda 105 lightweight field gun, the latter two are being manufactured by private firm Bharat Forge. The list also includes Ashok Leyland military vehicles, mine-protected vehicles, combat helmets, and vests manufactured by private firm MKU, multi-mode hand grenades, and various kinds of ballistic protection.
As for Naval platforms, India has offered to export anti-submarine warfare corvettes made by the state-run Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE), apart from various kinds of patrol and interceptor boats and Landing Craft Utility, which are used to transport troops and materiel from ship to shore and vice-versa.
Also on offer are lightweight and heavyweight torpedos, besides naval 30 mm guns, rocket launchers, coastal surveillance systems, and communication and combat management systems for ships.
Coming to the aircraft that have been cleared for export, the list includes LCA Tejas & Light Combat Helicopter, which is yet to be ordered for the IAF and the Army. Both services are in the process of placing an order for 15 LCHs, but the numbers are expected to go up.