On November 9, 2022, Bharat Forge Limited, a Pune-based company, said it had received an export order worth $155.50 million for one of its 155mm artillery gun platforms. The contract had been received by its subsidiary Kalyani Strategic Systems Limited, and it would be completed in three years.
The Indian government’s Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative and Make in India policy has brought about a significant change in the defense manufacturing sector in India, and this is one of the examples of the success of the initiative.
The company communicated with the Bombay Stock Exchange in a notification stating, “We are pleased to inform that Kalyani Strategic Systems Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the company, has received an export order for a gun platform 155 mm artillery to be executed. over a period of 3 years. The total value of the order is $155.50 million.
However, the company did not mention the country that placed the order for the artillery guns, but did mention that it is a non-conflict zone, which means that the country is currently not involved in any war. The company said: “This order, in a non-conflict zone, is a great testament to the Indian government’s AatmaNirbhar Bharat program and its sustained efforts to promote exports of locally designed, developed and manufactured advanced defense platforms (IDDM ) from India.
The company also did not specify the exact artillery exported, as Kalyani Strategic Systems manufactures several models of the 155mm gun, which are MARG (Multi-terrain Artillery Gun), Bharat ULH (Ultra-Light Howitzer), Bharat 52 and Bharath 45.
The buyer country could be Saudi Arabia and the weapon selected could be Bharat 52, because it was reported in 2020 that Saudi Arabia was evaluating two weapons sent by the Kalyani group, Bharat 52 and Garuda V2. The Garuda V2 being a 105 mm gun, it is not the gun in question. The Bharat-52 gun is a towed 155mm 52 caliber howitzer, and it is also being considered by the Indian Army.
A variety of goods, including a variety of artillery weapons, have been produced by Bharat Forge, which has recently branched out widely into the production of defense equipment. Although it has supplied the Indian Army with 60 Kalyani-M4 armored vehicles and ordered 30 more, it has yet to receive a national order for its artillery guns.
The Ministry of Defense has gradually banned the import of a number of weapons since 2021 in a bid to boost manufacturing and export. Shares of Bharat Forge hit a 52-week high of Rs. 890 on BSE after the news, before falling to Rs. 878.7 on Wednesday.
It should be noted that this is the second such significant incident in which an Indian defense manufacturer has received an export order. In September 2022, India was ordered to export missiles, rockets and ammunition to Armenia. India is also going to export the indigenous multi-barreled Pinaka rocket launchers to Armenia to help the nation in its war against Azerbaijan. This will be the first export of Pinaka rocket launchers.
India has signed a $250 million (over Rs 2,000 crore) deal to export anti-tank rockets and other ammunition to Armenia, except rocket launchers. India will supply the weapons in the coming months through a government-to-government channel.