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Modi pitches India as defense manufacturing hub

World's largest arms importer seeks to build up export capacity

Indian manufacturers display their gun system at DefExpo, on the outskirts of Chennai, India. (Photo by Yuji Kuronuma)

CHENNAI/MUMBAI -- Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday outlined his ambitious target for the country to become an export hub for defense equipment, as it works towards shedding its tag as the world's largest arms importer.

The promotion of India as an emerging defense manufacturing hub is the over-arching theme in the four-day DefExpo India gathering in the South Indian city of Chennai. The biennial event is being attended by over 670 defense companies, including 154 foreign manufacturers.

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