06:31 GMT22 October 2020
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    To boost export of defense equipment, India has amended the Special Chemicals, Organisms, Materials, Equipment and Technologies (SCOMET) rules to align itself according to world’s two most important multilateral export control regimes, namely the Wassenaar Arrangement and the Australia Group.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — The SCOMET list includes those goods and technology which can be used for both civil and military applications and need government authorization for exporting out of the country. India's Ministry of Commerce & Industry notified changes in the SCOMET from time to time in order to implement obligations in the field of non-proliferation.

    "A significant number of changes to SCOMET have been carried out to adopt the regulations and lists of the Wassenaar Arrangement and the Australia Group, two multilateral export control regimes that India wishes to join," a release sent by India's Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) said.

    Countries that wish to become a member of multilateral export control regimes need to ensure that exports are not accessed by proliferators, terrorist groups and non-state actors.

    "These regulations are an important step to address such concerns. Further, global supply chains are increasingly interconnected. Adoption of these regulations is expected to act as an enabler for a greater role for Indian industry in global supply chains for high technology and value-added items and strategic sector items."

    The updated list includes 16 broad categories of products which need approval from India's Department of Defense Production. The new Category 8 of SCOMET is, ‘Special materials and related equipment, material processing, electronics, computers, telecommunications, information security, sensors and lasers, navigation and avionics, marine, aerospace and propulsion'.

    India aims to join the Wassenaar Arrangement and the Australia Group in the next few months. "Joining the Wassenaar agreement will integrate India with the global efforts for non-proliferation and facilitate India's defense trade. But firstly, India has to expand the range of exportable products, because currently it has limited overseas markets and predominance of defense manufacturers who have been in the business far longer than India poses major challenges." Amit Cowshish, former financial advisor to India's Defense Ministry, said.

    In 2015, the Indian government had made changes to export items like warships, tanks, armored vehicles, ammunition, rifles and small arms, military training equipment, electronic warfare devices, software, bombs and torpedoes.

    The Narendra Modi government has taken several steps since 2014, including eight times jump in granting an export license to the private sector, to achieve a six-fold increase in defense exports worth $2 billion from the current level in the next two years.




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