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In a significant development aimed at bolstering India’s defence capabilities and fostering self-reliance in the aerospace sector, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh recently articulated a bold vision during the Times Now Summit themed “India Unstoppable.” His announcement centred around the exploration of opportunities to export indigenous engine technologies developed by the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

During his address, Minister Rajnath Singh disclosed that he had instructed DRDO’s Gas Turbine Research Establishment (GTRE) and HAL to investigate the feasibility of exporting the Kaveri and F-414 engines. This directive marks a pivotal shift in India’s defence strategy, emphasizing not only the aspiration for self-sufficiency but also the ambition to emerge as a global exporter in the aerospace domain.

GE and HAL are still in talks for local production of the F-414 engine with 80 Percent ToT for which talks are still ongoing and the deal is expected by the end of this year. HAL plans to start the rollout of locally assembled F-414 engines from the Indian plant from 2027 onwards slowing increasing its indigenous content in them to 80 per cent by 2030. F-414 engines are to be used on Tejas MkII and AMCA MkI programs and will see local manufacturing of nearly 400 engines in the next 20 years in India.

Furthermore, Minister Rajnath Singh highlighted the importance of engaging in collaborations with renowned international entities such as Safran from France and counterparts in the United Kingdom. These partnerships, he emphasized, would facilitate technology transfer and pave the way for India to emerge as a formidable player in the global aerospace arena.

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