India plans to expand operations of its state run Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) to compete with global defense equipment manufacturing companies, Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar said Wednesday.
The minister said during the inspection of defense equipment manufacturing companies in Kanpur and discussed with the units' officials the ways to increase quality and quantity of their products.
"We want to expand HAL so that it can take on the global defence equiment manufacturers. We'll be meeting with the company's officials and dicuss with them issues related to technology, quality and production," Parrikar said.
He said the government would endeavor to give the city - which has five ordnance factories, a HAL unit and an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) - "the place it deserved in the defense industry".
The minister said the was no plan to privatize the Kanpur-based defense companies. "The government, rather, was devising ways to improve their efficiency and output."
Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has been asked to collaborate with the IITs to conduct joint research programs to help meet the country's defense needs, he added.