New Delhi: In line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi`s vision to export defence hardware, supersonic cruise missile manufacturer BrahMos Aerospace has said that South-East Asian and Latin American countries have shown interest in acquiring the 290-km range weapon system and it is possible to export the missile to certain friendly nations.
"Several South-East-Asian and Latin American countries want the BrahMos, expressed interest in it, particularly for the naval and coastal defence versions. A definite list of such countries already exists. We are progressing with our marketing strategy for exporting BrahMos to certain nations, subject to clearance from both Indian and Russian governments," BrahMos Aerospace CEO Sudhir Kumar Mishra said.
"We expect several export contracts to be signed with nations friendly to both India and Russia in the near future," he told PTI in an interview.
Mishra declined to name the countries that have shown interest in the missile system but Defence Ministry sources said Vietnam and Indonesia in South East Asia and Venezuela in Latin America have expressed willingness to procure the missile.
Earlier, DRDO chief Avinash Chander had also expressed interest in exporting defence weapons to friendly countries.
DRDO and Russian NPO Mashinostroyenia (NPOM) are partners in BrahMos joint venture.
The inter-governmental agreement between India and Russia for development of BrahMos missile also stipulates use of this advanced system to be inducted into the Indian and Russian armed forces as well as export to friendly countries.
Recently, the Prime Minister had stated that India should now move towards self-reliance in producing military weapons and systems and also look for exporting them to the friendly nations.
Asked about his immediate plans for the missile firm, Mishra said it will be indigenising missile development in India, capacity building for larger production, meeting the production orders ahead of schedule to ensure delivery of missiles on time and ensuring different versions of BrahMos missiles to meet the aspirations and requirements of the defence force including Army, Navy and Air Force.
Mishra said the Indian contribution has so far been only for the inertial navigation guidance system and fire control system. "We have to focus on indigenously realising the engine and seeker for the BrahMos missile," he added.