The IIGP has supported more than 400 innovators and start-ups with in-depth technology commercialisation training and handholding support to commercialise and scale their ventures in India and across the world
You have been closely involved with the Indian defence industry, both in the private and the public sector. What are your observations about it, in terms of its limitations and strengths?
We see tremendous strength and opportunity in India’s defence industry ‒ both private and public. We are always looking for strategic Indian industry partners across the country ─ Indian companies of all sizes, including Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and suppliers throughout India ─ to collaborate and explore security solutions unique to India.
Public-private partnerships are indeed a key part of building strategic, long-term international defence partnerships that benefit multiple stakeholders. For example, we signed a Certificate of Partnership earlier this year with BEML, one of India’s leading public sector companies, to explore aerospace collaboration opportunities in India. As you may know, BEML has designed and developed ground support equipment for India’s LCA ‘Tejas’ fighter programme.
In addition to India’s highly-capable public sector companies, many private Indian companies have entered the aerospace and defence arena, which will continue to drive innovation and broaden the array of capabilities across India’s defence-industrial ecosystem. We’re very excited by the incredible potential we see in India.
Despite several amendments and revisions, the defence procurement procedure remains work in progress. From an OEM’s perspective, what modifications does it need to deliver on its promise of building a robust defence-industrial complex in India?
It would be inappropriate for us to comment on Indian government policy, but we are encouraged by what we’re seeing and the positive interactions we’ve had with Indian industry.
How do you view Indo-US defence industrial partnership? Has it delivered on its potential?
Defence-industrial partnership has long been a hallmark of strategic ties and trust between nations. The US and India are natural partners with many shared interests, and we are very encouraged by the positive trend we’re seeing in India-US relations, including on the defence-industrial partnership front.
Robust, long-term defence partnerships are built on commitment and trust, which requires investing in people, as well as products and platforms.
For example, in collaboration with Tata Advanced Systems we have established an industrial base in Hyderabad where we currently produce C-130 empennages ─ which incidentally are on all Super Hercules aircraft globally ─ and a metal-to-metal bonding facility at the same location. This bears testimony to our contribution to the development of Indo-US defence industrial partnership.
We have also indicated our intent to produce F-16 wings in India, thereby integrated India into the global supply chain for the world’s most successful fighter plane programme, further attesting to this trust in potential.
Additionally, Lockheed Martin has been a strong supporter of government of India initiatives that encourage innovation, entrepreneurship, and industry, notably the India Innovation Growth Programme (IIGP).
Lockheed Martin has sponsored and supported the IIGP since 2007 in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology, the Indo-US Science and Technology Forum, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Stanford Graduate School of Business, and the IC2 Institute at the University of Texas.
The IIGP has supported more than 400 innovators and start-ups with in-depth technology commercialisation training and handholding support to commercialise and scale their ventures in India and across the world. To date, the revenue generated for Indian entrepreneurs through this programme is approaching USD 1 billion, and it is a flagship innovation programme in the Department of Science and Technology.
We are very proud of the IIGP and our other partnerships with India which we believe this investment will contribute significantly to enhancement and evolution of the overall defence-industrial landscape in the country.
Public-private partnerships are indeed a key part of building strategic, long-term international defence partnerships that benefit multiple stakeholders. For example, we signed a Certificate of Partnership earlier this year with BEML, one of India’s leading public sector companies, to explore aerospace collaboration opportunities in India
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