Akash surface-to-air missile
Akash surface-to-air missile
Photo via @IAF_MCC on Twitter

New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on Wednesday cleared the export of Akash surface-to-air missile, which has a range of 25 km. The missile was inducted in the IAF in 2014 and in the Indian Army in the ensuing year.

This is the first big export of a defence platform that India will be undertaking. The extent of indigenisation in the missile is 96%.

The export version of Akash will be different from the system currently deployed, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said after the Cabinet decision.

He said so far Indian defence exports were limited to parts and components and the outgo of big platforms was minimal.

The Cabinet also constituted a committee comprising the defence minister, the external affairs minister and the national security adviser to provide faster approvals for export of big platforms.

Singh said several countries have shown interest in other major platforms like the coastal surveillance system, radars and air platforms.

This committee would authorise subsequent exports of major indigenous platforms to various countries and explore various options, including the Government-to-Government route.

Rajnath Singh said the government intends to focus on exporting high value defence platforms to achieve a target of $ 5 billion of defence exports.

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