Safran-HAL JV will soon set up factory in Valpoi: Shripad

Union Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik addressing the media following his visit to ‘Hughes Precision’ company unit at IDC Verna on Saturday.



Union Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik, on Saturday, informed that defence firms setting up non-polluting factories in Goa will provide 80 per cent job opportunities to the sons of soil.

Naik was speaking to the media after inspecting the ‘Hughes Precision’ company unit, set up at the IDC Verna, for manufacturing bullets, under the DRDO.

The company has land in Betul for stocking the material required for production.

Speaking further, Naik said that the much-awaited joint venture between Safran Helicopter Engines, a French company, and Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), a defence PSU, will soon set up helicopter spare parts production factory in Valpoi.

The process of setting up this unit was delayed in view of COVID-19 crisis, said Naik.

He recalled that the former defence minister and ex-chief minister Manohar Parrikar had announced the project in October 2016, with a total investment of Rs 170 crore.

The engines of advanced light helicopters of various versions, light combat helicopters and future light utility helicopters that are common between HAL and Saffron would be maintained at this facility.

“I recently called up HAL chairman wherein it was disclosed that they are totally prepared to set up the facility in Valpoi. The France-based Safran Helicopter Engines has shifted its office due to the pandemic crisis, but they are now willing to come down to India. The government of India will see that 80 per cent of the jobs in the defence units in Goa are provided to the locals. In case, if qualified or trained persons fail to approach then others will be engaged into the jobs,” he said.

He further said that the government is focusing on inviting more and more non-polluting industries to Goa, which would certainly help to reduce unemployment in the state.

He congratulated the ‘Hughes Precision’ management for setting up a facility in Goa, which he called the need of the hour.

“Bullet factory is set up for the first time in Goa, under the initiative ‘Make in India,’ wherein ammunition would be made along with any other defence requirements. The Hughes Precision unit based at Verna would soon start production on a large scale after some clearance is given, and a property to stock gun powder has already been purchased in Betul,” informed Naik.

He also praised Goa Shipyard Ltd (GSL) which is based in Vasco.

“GSL is executing defence works worth thousands of crores, and it is  number one shipbuilding company in India. GSL has constructed numbers of vessels for Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard. The company has even exported number of ships to foreign countries,” added Naik.