Islamabad, ‘To exploit its defence production potential to the fullest, Pakistan needs to develop and progress in the fields of education, quality HR, R&D, industrialisation, technology, academia-industry linkages and provide an enabling environment to the private sector.’ This was the key message of the eminent speakers at the seminar on ‘Defence Production Potential in Pakistan: Increasing through Public-Private Partnership – A Policy Construct’ organised by the Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS) in Islamabad.
The Keynote Address was delivered by General Zubair Mehmood Hayat, NI (M) (Retd), Former Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. Other distinguished speakers included Vice Admiral Iftikhar Ahmed Rao (Retd), Former Deputy Chief of Naval Staff (Operations) & Managing Director Karachi Shipyard; Air Vice Marshal Asad Ikram (Retd), Senior Advisor, Project Phoenix, Air Headquarters; and Mr Tanveer Sultan Awan, Chairman, Hajvairy Technologies (Pvt) Limited. The seminar was chaired by President CASS Air Marshal Farhat Hussain Khan (Retd), while Air Vice Marshal Faheem Ullah Malik, Director at CASS moderated the proceedings.
Speakers were of the view that given the prevailing geopolitical and geoeconomic environment, there was an urgent need to revamp and transform Pakistan’s existing archaic public-controlled model regarding defence production. The fundamental objective, it was stressed should be the capacity and capability-based development of the private industry through public-sector support. In this regard, DPEs should create a conducive environment for the private sector and fund their Research and Development (R&D). It was important for the public sector to own the private sector to foster indigenous R&D and transfer of production.
Representatives of Defence Production Establishments (DPEs), retired and serving military officers, scholars from various think tanks, and other relevant stakeholders participated in the seminar and forwarded well considered proposals for improvement of existing defence production processes.