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India bans import of foreign drones

The import of drone components will not require any approvals.

AP file
AP file

By Our Reporter

Published: Thu 10 Feb 2022, 7:35 AM

Last updated: Thu 10 Feb 2022, 9:49 AM

India has banned the import of drones, except for R&D, defence and security, with immediate effect. The Civil Aviation ministry said on Wednesday that the move is to promote domestically-made drones.

However, the import of drone components will not require any approvals.

The government had last year launched a liberalised drone regime, aimed at making the country a hub for the unmanned aircraft. It had cleared production-linked incentive scheme for drones and their components and had allocated Rs1.2 billion for a three-year period.

The domestic drone manufacturing industry was expected to grow from a combined turnover of about Rs800 million to Rs9 billion in three years. Jyotiraditya Scindia, the civil aviation minister, had said the combined turnover of the industry could grow to nearly Rs150 billion by 2026. India aims to emerge as a global drone hub by 2030.

Last month, the civil aviation ministry had notified the drone certification scheme with minimum safety and quality requirements to boost domestic production.


Until recently, 90 per cent of drones in use in India were imported. Most major components are imported, mainly from China, according to industry sources.

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