BrahMos, the supersonic cruise missile system jointly made by India and Russia, has been selected by the Philippines under a $374.96 million deal, making it the first export order for the missile.
The contract is for purchase of a shore-based anti-ship variant of the missile from India. Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand are other South-East Asian countries that have shown interest in the system.
- The defence deal is unlikely to go down well with China, whose aggressive behaviour in the disputed South China Sea has taken relations with the Philippines to a fresh low. The Philippine Marines intend to use the BrahMos as a shore-based anti-ship missile.
- BrahMos is capable of being launched from land, sea, undersea and air against surface and sea-based targets. The range of the missile was capped at 290 km as per Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) regulations. India entered the MTCR regime in June 2016 allowing extension in range beyond 300 km.
- According to the government, policy changes have resulted in defence exports increasing by more than 325% over the last five years. India has set an ambitious target of achieving defence exports of $5 billion by 2024. The country exported defence gear worth ₹8,434.84 crore during 2020-21.
- However, the BrahMos deal is being seen as a game changer as India’s defence exports so far have been items such as avionics, coastal surveillance systems, spares for radars, personal protective items, and offshore patrol vessels.
SOURCE: Hindustan Times