Roadblocks and Challenges Faced by Aerospace Engineering Companies in India

It was only with the dawn of 21st century that we saw India privatizing the aerospace industry. Of course, when it came to aerospace components manufacturers, India still continued to be largely unregulated. As the years passed by, some of our mainstream manufacturers managed to bag major deals with big names such as Airbus, Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems. That said, not many companies have been able to make a mark and position themselves as a dynamic aerospace partner. The productions have also been limited and there seems to be a definite need to address the challenges faced by the industry as a whole.

Start-ups, small-sized and medium-sized aerospace companies are seeing some growth but as an industry almost everyone are hitting the dead end. Some of the recent surveys suggest that the aircraft parts manufacturers in India face technological expertise as their number one roadblock with the second one being their incompetence to achieve zero-error targets.

The fast changing global spectrum of technology can at times be very difficult to catch up, especially when there are not enough monetary resources or funding at the disposal to buy these technologies. Today most of the aircraft parts manufacturers in India end up spending more for low production volume. This further adds to the misery when they are unable to buy and adapt to new technologies needed for different production cycles. This vicious cycle, above many other things, is not allowing India to become a world leader in aerospace universe.

A workforce that is not skilled up to the contemporary industry standards is also holding back the companies. Start-ups in particular are facing roadblocks with almost no firms interested in funding them. This in turn stops the talent within the country to be enthusiastic about the aerospace industry in India and they instead seek better opportunities in other nations.

With the Make in India campaign launched by the government few years back, things are expected to improve but even today government and other organizations are dependent to procure precision engineering aerospace components from vendors outside the country. In many cases, these foreign vendors are selling many of their components that are manufactured in India back to the buyers in India. This concludes, that trust and reliability of Indian buyers still lie with foreign vendors more than the native ones. In addition to this, for many years the taxation rules for the domestic players have been more stringent than the foreign vendors.

To begin with, the mindset and sentiment in general may undergo a transition, which can open newer avenues for the SMEs and start-ups. The aerospace ecosystem in India should start nurturing the smaller organizations and companies, which will result in a stable and ever expanding industry. Over a period of next 7-8 years, India can certainly become a world leader in terms of aerospace component supply chain. The big OEMs have already started collaborating on machined and sheet-metal parts production along with many other deals involving large aircraft sub assemblies.

The biggest change has come in form of Make in India campaign, which is spreading a lot of positivity amongst the aircraft parts manufacturers in India. There are many policies in the campaign that help companies of all sizes at different levels and encourage them to grow bigger and more robust.

Some of the other factors that may change the face of aerospace engineering companies in India include advancements in manufacturing engineering and design techniques along with many advanced materials used across the industry. While not all the advancements in technologies have reached India yet, but with the size of investment of time and money many of the foreign vendors have already done in the country, we should not be more than 4 to 5 years away from becoming a global aerospace component supply chain hub.

About The Author
Varun is anAerospace engineer working in Dynamatics Technology. The largest producers in of hydraulic pumps, automotive components, aerospace components and systems in Europe and India. Connect to know more. 

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