Department of Defence Production, Ministry of Defence, organised the Ambassadors’ Round Table Virtual conference on Aero India 2021, chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in Delhi on Tuesday. The major reach-out effort of the Ministry was well attended by over 200 invitees comprising Ambassadors, Heads of Missions and Defence Attaches of over 75 countries, indicating the growing stature of the 13th mega biennial event, to be held in Karnataka’s capital Bengaluru from 3-7 February 2021.The senior representatives of foreign missions at New Delhi were briefed about the Aero India-21well in advance with a view to encourage the presence of their leaders and senior most decision makers at the event in February 2021 wherein India’s aerospace and defence manufacturing capabilities will be displayed under one umbrella.
Addressing the conference, the Defence Minister said, “Aero India-21aligns with India’s vision to be among the top five countries of the world in defence and aerospace industries, with active participation of public and private sector fulfilling the objective of self-reliance as well as requirements of other friendly countries.” Rajnath Singh said: “Aatmanirbhar Bharat was the centerpiece of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision and towards this, the Ministry of Defence has announced numerous government reforms such as increase in FDI to 74% through automatic route, the Defence Acquisition Procedure-2020, revised offset guidelines to promote Investment in India for codevelopment and co-production as also formulated the draft Defence Production and Export Promotion Policy 2020 (DPEPP 2020) during the preceding pandemic months to steer the vision as also for ease of business.”
He also added that India’s aerospace and defence sector has matured and is exploring mutually beneficial partnerships with friendly countries to set up manufacturing industries in India and defence equipment produced in India to be exported abroad. He further emphasised, “Aero India-21 will showcase the government’s intent to achieve a turnover of $25 billion with exports of $5 billion in aerospace and defence goods and services by 2025.”
The representatives from across the world were briefed that Aero India-21 will be a business-oriented event and will be compliant with Covid-19 stipulations. The event has received tremendous interest since the launch of the event website by the Defence Minister on 11 September and more than 90%of space has been booked reflecting the tremendous interest shown by exhibitors to participate in the aero show. The fine-tuning of the business events and seminars are being planned and over 500 exhibitors are expected at Asia’s largest aeroshow.
Singh also urged the Ambassadors to impress upon their leadership and industry captains of their respective countries and defence industries to participate in Aero India-21 in a big way so as to “dive deep into the strategic and business opportunities available in India with the aim of establishing strategic partnerships”. Singh released the official Aero India 2021 inaugural film on the occasion. The theme of the event “The runway to a billion opportunities”, encompasses the gamut of aerospace and defence manufacturing, including opportunities in the civil aerospace domain. The Defence Minister expressed confidence that Aero India-21 will demonstrate India’s ability to take the lead and further build on our strengths in the post Covidworld. The Department of DefenceProduction gave a detailed presentation on all aspects of Aero India-21 and built in assurances to be compliant with Covid-19 stipulations.
The government of Karnataka also gave a presentation, informing the participants about the preparedness of the state to conduct the show in a controlled and safe environment. Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa also addressed the audience and assured them that the government of Karnataka would make all necessary preparations towards safe conduct of the Aero India-21 in February 2021 at Bengaluru, keeping in mind the safety of the participants and in compliance with Covid-19 protocols. MoS defence Shripad Yesso Naik, Secretary (Defence Production) Raj Kumar also addressed the gathering and echoed the resolve of the Ministry of Defence to steer the indigenous defence industry as one of the pillars of Aatmanirbhar Bharat and invited the foreign delegates to Aero India-21.