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Indian Defense Minister Welcomes 20% Increase in 2015-2016 Defense Budget

Sputnik News

19:13 28.02.2015(updated 19:19 28.02.2015)

Indian defense minister said that the government aimed to make the country more self-sufficient in the area of defense equipment.

NEW DELHI (Sputnik) – Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar told Sputnik on Saturday he welcomed a 20-percent increase in defense spending in the country.

'The increase in defense budget from the previous year is a welcome step,' Parrikar said.

Earlier in the day, the Indian government allocated 2.47 trillion rupees (some $40 billion) to the country's 2015-2016 defense budget, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in a statement. It is some 20 percent more than the 2013-2014 defense spending.

'This year keeping our defense forces ready for any eventuality I have provided adequately for the needs of the armed forces, the budget allocation for the year 2015-2016 is Rs 2,46,727 crores,' the minister said, using a unit equal to ten million Indian rupees.

Arun Jaitley said that the government aimed to make India more self-sufficient in the area of defense equipment.

Almost half of the sum will be spent on the country's army, while nine percent will be allocated to the air force and six percent to the navy. The modernization of the armed forces will take 38 percent of the defense budget, the minister said.

On Saturday, the Indian Parliament on Saturday presented the country's budget for the 2015-2016 period. The total expenditure within budget estimates stood at $288 billion, with the fiscal deficit expected to be 3.9 percent of India's GDP, while the revenue deficit will be 2.8 percent of the GDP.


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