22 Dec :The Government will provide 80 per cent of the funding to the projects taken up by private or foreign companies in defence production involving critical technology not available in India.Replying to a question in the Lok Sabha on Monday, Minister of State for Defence Pallam Raju said "Ministry of Defence has signed MoU/agreement with various foreign countries to promote defence cooperation."
He said that government has offered joint development with the private sector to manufacture defence items involving critical technology which is not available in India and 80 per cent of the funds would be provided by the Ministry of Defence while 20 per cent would have to be brought in by the unit, private or Public Sector Company.
"The whole objective is to meet the requirement of armed forces in a timely manner," Raju said adding that DRDO, India’s defence lab, has partnership with 400 companies for joint development to manufacture defence systems that armed forces require from time to time.
The agreement with foreign countries to promote defence cooperation includes imparting training to defence personnel of some friendly countries in training institutions.
Opening of defence production to the private sector was strongly opposed by CPI-M leader Basudeb Acharia.