ISLAMABAD: The production and overall defense requirements were reviewed by the Senate Standing Committee on Defence Production in its meeting in Islamabad on Wednesday at Parliament House. It was briefed in detail about the progress of Heavy Industries Taxila (HIT). Business Development Plans and details of research projects were also shared.
The meeting was chaired by Senator Lt. General ® Abdul Qayyum HI (M), and was attended by Senator Nuzhat Sadiq, Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, Senator Nauman Wazir Khattak, Senator Muhammad Akram, Senator Anwar Lal Dean, Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Senator Abdul Ghafoor Haideri and senior officers of the Ministry of Defence Production along with all concerned.
Chairman Committee, Senator Lt. Gen Abdul Qayyum HI (M) took serious notice of the Basic Exchange Cooperation Agreement (BECA), between Washington and New Delhi that was signed recently in India. BECA will allow India and US to share geospatial information, enable interoperability of forces and acquisition of armed drones.
It was asserted that even though this measure has been portrayed as a deterrent for China; yet Pakistan and the rest of South Asia stands to lose. Gen Abdul Qayyum was of the view that this agreement will play an important role in realizing the Indian ambition of becoming the regional hegemon and will destabilize the strategic regional equilibrium; with severe consequences for Pakistan. A resolution was passed unanimously in this regard.
While being briefed on the work and progress of the Heavy Industries Taxila (HIT), the Committee was informed that the aim of this enterprise was to manufacture, rebuild, upgrade and carryout R&D of armoured vehicles. HIT can vastly be categorized into three sections that include manufacturing factories, rebuild plants and support facilities.
Manufacturing units involve tank and gun manufacturing facilities and Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) production. The Tank manufacturing facility has to its credit numerous 3rd generation auto-tracking tanks. It has successfully manufactured Tank Al-Khalid, T85IIAP and T69IIMP. The Committee was informed that VT-4 tanks, with enhanced night combat capabilities will be inducted soon. HIT’s APC facility manufactures M113 Family of Armoured Personnel Carriers using state of the art Computer Aided Design (CAD).
The Gun Manufacturing Factory produces tank barrels and complete tank guns. Upgrade of manufacturing facilities for Artillery Gun Barrels is in process. Rebuild Plants include Heavy Rebuild Factories designed to modernize and upgrade tanks and Armoured Recovery Vehicles. Track Vehicles and Armoured Personnel Carriers fall under this ambit as well.
Discussing HIT’s Commercial and Business plans, the Committee was informed that since its inception, HIT has contributed to various commercial activities. During the last five years HIT has deposited a sum of PKR 1.18 billion on account of sales, proportionate costs and taxes to the government exchequer.
Lt. Genl Abdul Qayyum while lauding the enthusiasm of HIT, said that the Organization had great potential for growth. He however, was of the opinion that HIT must step up efforts to spread forth its activities beyond borders and move towards international horizons. He said that this would benefit the country greatly thereby subsidizing the Defence Budget; essential for the growth of underdeveloped sectors in Pakistan.