Parrikar not concerned with ‘America First’ call

Bengaluru, Feb 14 (IANS) Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Tuesday said the “America First” call of US President Donald Trump is not a concern for India or the Make in India programme.

Asked if Trump’s America First would come in the way of Make in India and stop US firms from participating in the programme, Parrikar said: “You should have put this question to Boeing, they are there at the exhibition… Boeing, Lockheed Martin, etc.”

“What I will say is what I want… I want you to Make in India. If someone wants to shift production to some other place, it is his choice. I am not concerned,” Parrikar said at a press conference on the sidelines of “Aero India 2017”.

He also said that he has so far just heard of it, and there is no official communication from the US government.

“As far as we are concerned, there is so far no issue, there is no letter. I am only hearing about it,” he said.

Explaining it further, the minister said: “An OEM (original equipment manufacturer) helping a strategic partner will need their government’s approval. If they are proposing something, their government will give them in-principle approval, so that they can quote.”

Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju said that Boeing is already manufacturing beams in Nagpur, and the HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd) is making doors for Airbus.

“Aviation manufacturing is going to a lot of countries, so it is better to ask the companies what their stand is,” Raju said.

Parrikar supplemented it by saying: “India is already part of a global supply chain.”

–IANS

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