India's military imports witnessing steady decline

Other News Materials 2 August 2022 08:42 (UTC +04:00)
India's military imports witnessing steady decline

India’s military equipment imports are on a steady decline for the past few years, courtesy the country’s new acquisition policy that emphasises more on ‘Make in India’, Trend reports.

The share of imports in the overall acquisition of military equipment has been falling, shows government data. The acquisition is done under the ‘capital budget’, which is meant for payments against weapons, equipment, planes, helicopters, etc.

Tabled in Parliament, the data shows that imports comprised 39-40 per cent of all acquisitions in the financial year 2014-15. The figures have been declining for the past two years. In the fiscal ending March 31, 2021, the imports stood at 36 per cent, a count that slightly fell to 35.28 per cent by March 31, 2022.

In 2018-19, the imports spiked to 48.68 per cent, which probably was on account of the payments made for Rafale fighter jets, high-value items such as surveillance planes and other emergency purchases.

In March this year, Sweden-based think tank Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) released its assessment, “Trends in international arms transfers-2021”, for the five-year period from 2017 to 2021. The report pointed out that “India was the world’s largest importer of weapons and military equipment and accounted for 11 per cent of total global arms imports in the period”.

The report had a bit of good news too. A comparison of two five-year blocks showed that Indian arms imports had decreased by 21 per cent during 2017-21 as against 2012-16.

Friendly nations have been told that the production of military platforms, weapons and ammunition had to be done in India itself keeping in mind the country’s security.