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Maharashtra MSME Defence Expo 2024 Commences in Pune, Fostering Defence Sector Advancements

Defence Expo

Maharashtra witnessed the inauguration of its first and largest MSME Defence Expo today at the Pune International Exhibition and Convention Centre. The expo promises three days of groundbreaking discussions, showcases and collaborations, which aims to promote medium and small enterprises and position the state as a prominent hub for defence manufacturing.

Distinguished dignitaries including Shri. Devendra Gangadharrao Fadnavis, Deputy Chief Minister, Maharashtra; Shri. Uday Samant, Minister for Industries, Maharashtra; Shi. Chandrakant Patil, Higher and Technical Education Minister, Maharashtra; Shri. Harshdeep Kamble, Principal Secretary, Industries and Mining, Maharashtra among others, graced the event with their presence, marking a momentous occasion in the realm of defense innovation and collaboration.

The expo, heralded as the first-of-its-kind in the state, has drawn participation from over 500 MSMEs, Start-ups, and over 1 lakh registrations, including more than 20,000 students from Pune. Renowned industry leaders such as L&T, Mahindra, Tata, DRDO have converged to showcase their prowess, underscoring Maharashtra’s emergence as a pivotal hub for defense production. The event serves as a catalyst for fostering industry synergies, spotlighting cutting-edge technologies and nurturing proficiency within the defense production sector.

Shri. Devendra Gangadharrao Fadnavis emphasized, “I am delighted that Maharashtra’s first defence expo is happening in Pune which has been a strategic city for the defence manufacturing ecosystem in the country. Maharashtra has 11 ordnance factories, 5 defence PSUs, state-of-the-art DRDO facility and NDA – renowned Training Institute of the Indian Armed Forces. India has not only started manufacturing defence equipment but has also has partnerships with companies for technology transfer. Since defence equipment requires a lot of advanced technologies, Pune being a technology hub is an ideal location for forging partnerships between MSMEs and PSUs. We need MSMEs to bolster the defence manufacturing supply chain and expo’s like these will only strengthen our defence capabilities.”

Shri. Uday Samant said “Celebrating the inauguration of Maharashtra’s pioneering MSME Defence Expo, we embark on a journey of innovation and collaboration. The Maharashtra Government has announced four clusters to enhance the state’s defence competencies. In future Maharashtra will be the defence hub of the nation. The emphasis on Atmanirbhar Bharat in the defense sector by PM Modi has led to the emergence of numerous defense MSMEs, encouraging the country’s capabilities.”

On the first day of the expo, attendees were treated to a plethora of engaging sessions, including speaking sessions, panel discussions and keynote addresses delivered by esteemed representatives from government bodies and industry stalwarts. Topics like ‘Boosting a Defence Ecosystem in India,’ which included panelists from Bharat Forge, L&T Defence and Thales highlighted the current state of defence ecosystem in India and emphasized the need for a national mission program that will harness the capability of the Indian defence ecosystem and technology holders outside India.

One of the standout highlights has been the showcase of futuristic indigenous technologies spearheaded by start-up companies in Maharashtra. From Drones for Aerial Surveillance to Bio-polymer platform-based products for Wound Care, these innovations signify a pivotal step in the defense tech revolution.

The MSME Defence Expo aims to elevate the Maharashtra MSME ecosystem, establishing a robust supply chain foundation to cater to the defense production sector. By fostering academia-industry collaborations, the expo seeks to pave the way for defense manufacturing and exports, catalyzing a powerful ecosystem for the state and nation alike.

As the expo unfolds, it promises to be a transformative event, propelling Maharashtra to the forefront of the defense sector, driving economic growth, and safeguarding the nation’s security.

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