India’s Defence Acquisition Council green lights $26.8 billion in spending
India’s Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved INR2.3 trillion (US$26.8 billion) to purchase light combat helicopters (LCH), munitions and towed gun for the Indian Army, as well as LCHs and Tejas Mk1A light combat aircraft for the air force and medium range anti-ship missiles (MRAShM) for Indian Navy (IN) ships.
Described as Acceptance of Necessity (AoNs) for various Capital Acquisition Proposals the council released the list on 30 November with a focus on aatmanirbharta or self-reliance focusing on a commitment to substantial local industry involvement, specifically that 98% of contract must be domestically spent.
The DAC has accorded the AoN for procurement of two types of anti-tank munitions specifically area denial munition (ADM) with a focus on defeating MBTs and APCs, as well as personnel. Alongside the approval, DAC gave the go ahead for the replacement of the Indian field gun with a new towed gun system.
Additionally, the army’s T-90 MBTs will receive an automatic target tracker and new computer system as part of a drive to increase the platform’s lethality.
The MRAShM has been envisaged as a lightweight surface-to-surface missile which will be a primary offensive weapon onboard IN ships.
In an effort to further push local manufacturing, the DAC noted that in all categories of procurement cases, a minimum 50% of indigenous content should be in the form of material, components and software manufactured in India.
Additionally, for all procurement cases with AoN cost up to INR3 billion ($36 million), registered micro, small and medium enterprises and recognised start-ups will be considered for issue of Request for Proposal without any stipulation of financial parameters.
This might further be relaxed with approval of Defence Procurement Board (DPB) for AoN costs up to RAN5billion ($59.9 million) on a case-to-case basis.
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