• Monday, October 02, 2023


India clears military procurement worth £4.3b

Indian defence minister Rajnath Singh (ANI Photo)

By: Shubham Ghosh

HERE are news in brief on Indian economy & business for Friday, September 15, 2023:

India’s defence ministry on Thursday greenlit nine procurement plans totaling approximately Rs 45,000 crore (£4.3 billion). The acquisitions include 12 Su-30 MKI fighter jets, Dhruvastra air-to-surface missiles, and the upgrade of Dornier aircraft. This clearance aligns with the ‘Make in India’ initiative and addresses ongoing border tensions with China. Particularly significant is the approval for enhancing the avionics of the Dornier fleet, aiming to improve accuracy and reliability, given prior technical issues. The Defence Acquisition Council, led by defence minister Rajnath Singh, granted the essential Acceptance of Necessity for these acquisitions, reinforcing the ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ (self-reliant India) goal by prioritizing procurement from Indian vendors under designated categories.

The Indian government has plans to establish a ‘Tech Museum’ in New Delhi, showcasing cutting-edge and upcoming technologies of the nation, as outlined in official records. The Central Public Works Department, a key construction agency of the federal government, has requested proposals for consultancy services to design and develop this advanced museum at Nav Bharat Udyan on river Yamuna’s western banks. The museum aims to enlighten visitors about India’s latest technologies, instilling pride in the nation’s accomplishments across diverse domains through futuristic exhibits like 3-D mapping, touch displays, AV projections, holograms, interactive tables, QR Code info, and LED projection walls.

The basic customs duties and other levies will continue on eight products, including apple and walnut from the US as well as other countries, a senior official of the Indian government said on Friday. Additional secretary in the commerce department Peeyush Kumar said that India has imposed retaliatory customs duties on 28 American products in 2019 against US measure to imposes duties on certain steel and aluminium products. He added that India has withdrawn only retaliatory duty on these eight products this year and its value of imports into India from the US stood at $1.08 billion (£871.1 billion) in 2022-23. In return, India has gained market access for indefinite period into the US through commitments for granting approval to 70 per cent and 80 per cent of exclusion requests, respectively, for Indian steel and aluminum products.

A court in Delhi court on Friday sought response of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), India’s agency to fight economic crime, on a bail application of alleged conman Sanjay Prakash Rai alias Sanjay Sherpuria, who was arrested in a money-laundering case on charges of cheating several people by portraying himself to be close to the prime minister’s office, senior bureaucrats and politicians. Additional sessions judge Sachin Gupta issued notice to the ED and directed the central probe agency to file its reply to the application by September 21. Advocate Nitesh Rana, representing the accused, told the court that the entire case was a “figment of imagination” of the investigating agency, and that there was no evidence against Rai.

Indian commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal on Friday invited the engineering community to aim for an export target worth $100 billion (£80.6 billion) in engineering services, design, construction and research and development (R&D) by 2030. He said it at the ‘Global Services Export Conclave on Design, Engineering, Construction, R&D, and Environmental Services: Sustainable Energy, Transportation, and Infrastructure’ in New Delhi on the occasion of Engineers Day. Goyal acknowledged India’s rising global status, exemplified by the successful G20 summit hosted during India’s presidency last weekend and the world’s recognition of the nation’s capabilities and leadership through the G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration.

(With agencies inputs)

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