The government is imparting more energy into the Strategic Partnership (SP) model in defence manufacturing. Around six domestic firms – mostly private will be picked as strategic partner to manufacture high end defence equipments with the partnership of foreign original equipment manufacturers.
The Strategic Partnership initiative is to build the base for indigenous defence manufacturing capability besides fulfilling the job creation objective of Make in India programme. Foreign firms including Lockheed and Martin are in the fray according to defence sources.
An important component of SP model is the selection of domestic private sector partners in defence equipment manufacturing. The strategic partner has to tie up with foreign firms. Reliance Industries has emerged as the major strategic partner after the meeting of the Defence Acquistion Council (DAC) that met on May 20th to finalize the modalities of the SP initiative. Tata, Mahindra, Bharat Forge, Ashok Leyland are also in the fray on major equipment manufacturing proposals.
Total projected equipments to be manufactures is estimated to be nearly 2 lakh crores including the manufacture of submarines, helicopters and single engine fighter crafts.