India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) said it can export combat aircraft and missiles at a much lower production cost than other countries, including China.
DRDO chief Avinash Chander told Press Trust of India that the agency has suggested a ‘single window clearance’ for time-bound sale of arms to friendly foreign nations.
A policy mechanism needs to be developed for weapon exports.
"We are discussing the methodology for developing the export potential as well as a policy mechanism for export of weapon systems," Chander said.
The products that may be considered for export include Tejas light combat aircraft, Akash air defence system, Prahar class of missiles and BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles.
DRDO’s suggestions follow Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s observation that India should increase indigenous weapons development for itself, and also export them to other countries.
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When questioned about the cost-benefit for countries purchasing weapons from India, Chander said several Indian arms are many times cheaper than the weapon systems sold by other countries.
"There are various other systems, like if you take strategic missiles, the long-range missiles that China sells to Saudi Arabia and the cost at which we produce, it would be one-third or one-fourth," Chander added.
"By that, our production cost would be much lower. What will be the export cost, that will be the policy decision of the government."
Image: The indigenously developed Tejas Light Combat aircraft. Photo: courtesy of Rinju9.