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India’s current military technology research and development (R&D) expenditure, hovering around 0.65% of GDP, stands in stark contrast to major powers like China (2.14%), the US (2.83%), and even South Korea (4.8%). This disparity presents a compelling argument for India to significantly increase its investment in this critical area.

With a low R&D budget, India remains reliant on foreign technology for critical defense equipment. This dependence can create vulnerabilities in times of geopolitical strain and limit India’s strategic autonomy. Rapid advancements in military technology can quickly render existing equipment obsolete. Without robust domestic R&D, India risks falling behind in the technological race, jeopardizing its military capabilities.

Increased R&D spending fosters the development of cutting-edge indigenous military technologies. This empowers India to address its unique defense needs and create exportable solutions, boosting the economy. A strong domestic R&D base reduces reliance on foreign imports, making India less susceptible to disruptions in the global arms market and political pressures from supplier nations.

Increased R&D expenditure fuels growth in the defense sector, leading to job creation for skilled professionals and stimulating the overall industrial ecosystem.

India’s current level of R&D spending is simply unsustainable for a nation with aspirations of global power. By significantly increasing investments in military technology development, India can bridge the technological gap with its rivals, ensure its long-term security, and emerge as a major player in the global defense arena.

This requires not just increased spending, but also strategic allocation of resources and a commitment to fostering a robust and efficient R&D ecosystem. The time to act is now, for India’s future security hinges on its ability to innovate and develop its own cutting-edge military technologies.