Indian MoD Unveils First ‘No Import’ Weapons List

Among the world’s largest importers of military hardware, India has just announced its first list of 101 weapon systems and equipment that it will no long purchase from abroad. The expansive list, accessed first by Livefist, covers a large spectrum of hardware including transport aircraft, artillery guns, combat helicopters, radar systems, simulators, assault rifles, warships and more.

The first set of items will be banned from import starting December 2020, followed by another set from December 2021 and a third from December 2022.

Making the announcement on Twitter, Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said, “This decision will offer a great opportunity to the Indian defence industry to manufacture the items in the negative list by using their own design and development capabilities or adopting the technologies designed & developed by DRDO to meet the requirements of the Armed Forces. The embargo on imports is planned to be progressively implemented between 2020 to 2024. Our aim is to apprise the Indian defence industry about the anticipated requirements of the Armed Forces so that they are better prepared to realise the goal of indigenisation. All necessary steps would be taken to ensure that timelines for production of equipment as per the Negative Import List are met, which will include a co-ordinated mechanism for hand holding the industry by the Defence Services. More such equipment for import embargo would be identified progressively by the DMA in consultation with all stakeholders. A due note of this will also be made in the DAP to ensure that no item in the negative list is processed for import in the future.

Here’s the full list of 101 items on India’s first negative list. We’ll have a separate post with an analysis and breakdown of these items and what this list means. As with all things defence in India, ideas abound, but it is in implementation that they falter and collapse. There is an inherent nobility in the quest for self-reliance, but history has shown it is a path strewn with temptations, false promises and weak knees. We’ll follow up this breaking story with a deep dive on the strengths and weaknesses of this new import ban.

4 thoughts on “Indian MoD Unveils First ‘No Import’ Weapons List”

  1. Standardisation of platforms should be a priority.When the IL-76 is now available in new upgraded form and at v.affordable cost,it should be the platform for tankers,AWACS,AEW aircraft and heavylift transports now that the C-17 is out of production. The Airbus and other western options are far more expensive,why they’ve repeatedly been shot downby the MOD.In a time of great financial stress,with around 80% deficit, cost-effectiveness should be the way to go.
    Leasing is an option but of what type? Here againmore of types in service makes it easier to operate,etc.

  2. Kalyani, TATA and OFB have made truck mounted 155 mm artillery.
    Kalyani has also made lighweight LCV mounted 105 mm gun.

    What is the bureaucracy that is stopping from these being tested ? Has Indian army and DRDO made available firing ranges available to local manufacturers of arms ?
    When will this policy be announced ?

  3. As pointed out at other defence fora, does this mean that Gripen will be included in the ban list, because its equal to Tejas MWF ?

    Does this mean that Patriot or THAAD will be included in the list because we already possess the AAD/PAD ?

    Does this mean that nuclear powered submarines will be included because we already have the Arihant ?

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