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New HAL order to further boost India's self-reliance in defence manufacturing

IANS | June 18, 2024 11:51 AM

NEW DELHI: In a fillip to the ‘Make in India’ initiative and strengthening self-reliance in defence manufacturing, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) has received a request for proposal (RFP) by the Ministry of Defence for procurement of 156 light combat helicopters (LCH).

The news led to a more than 4.3 per cent jump in HAL shares to Rs 5, 427 in morning trade on Tuesday.

On Monday, the HAL stock jumped 4.62 per cent.

“We would like to inform that a Request for Proposal (RFP) has been issued by the Ministry of Defence for the procurement of 156 Light Combat Helicopters (90 for the Indian Army and 66 for the Indian Air Force (IAF), ” said HAL in a regulatory filing.

The tender is expected to be worth Rs 45, 000-Rs 50, 000 crore with helicopters to be acquired by the Indian Air Force and Indian Army.

HAL saw its consolidated revenue jump of 52.19 per cent to Rs 4308.68 crore in Q4 FY24 as compared to Rs 2, 831.19 crore in Q4 FY23. The revenue from operations increased 18.36 per cent YoY to Rs 14, 788.75 crore during the quarter.

Meanwhile, the move by the Ministry of Defence to procure 156 light combat helicopters further emboldens the vision of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh towards achieving self-reliance in defence manufacturing.

“Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, our aim will be to further strengthen the security apparatus of the country, with a focus on achieving self-reliance in defence manufacturing, ” said Minister Singh after assuming charge in the new BJP-led NDA government this month.

The policy of boosting defence production as part of the drive towards an ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ is increasingly reflected in the rising order books of the country's defence equipment manufacturing companies and underlines a positive outlook for the sector ahead.

Bengaluru-based Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), a key player in the country's defence industry, has an order book that stands at a robust Rs 75, 934 crore.

Before the new 156 light combat helicopters' order, HAL had an order book of Rs 38, 561 crore and is poised for a bigger leap in technology as India and the US are ready to sign an agreement for the manufacture of advanced GE engines for military planes at HAL's facilities.

Larsen & Toubro, another major player in the defence industry, has an extensive order book worth a staggering Rs 94, 000 crore.

The government's plan of stepping up defence exports aims to catapult India as a major player in the global defence market.

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