Indonesia eyes BrahMos for enhanced maritime security

This development comes as Air Marshal (Retd) Donny Ermawan Taufanto, the Secretary General of Indonesia’s Defense Ministry, met with Atul Rane, the head of BrahMos Aerospace, in New Delhi. 

Indonesia is showing strong interest in acquiring the BrahMos missile, a notable supersonic missile developed by India.

This development comes as Air Marshal (Retd) Donny Ermawan Taufanto, the Secretary General of Indonesia’s Defense Ministry, met with Atul Rane, the head of BrahMos Aerospace, in New Delhi.

The discussions, which focused on Indonesia purchasing the missiles, underline the strengthening relationship between the two countries.

This interest follows Jakarta’s recent announcement emphasizing the importance of its relationship with India.

Indonesia’s President-elect and current Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto, following his recent meeting with India’s Ambassador Sandeep Chakravorty in Jakarta, expressed that enhancing the harmony and cooperation of bilateral relations with India is a priority. He also expressed his eagerness for future discussions aimed at reinforcing these mutually beneficial ties.

Indonesia’s interest in the BrahMos missile has been ongoing, and there are high hopes within the Indian military-industrial complex for a deal to materialize this year.

In light of this, Dr. Ian Montratama, a strategic affairs analyst and professor of international relations at Pertamina University in Jakarta, stressed the importance of the BrahMos missile for Indonesia’s defense. He pointed out that the missile is crucial for safeguarding the country’s extensive maritime borders, according to reports by the Russian media outlet Sputnik.

Indonesia, the world’s most populous Islamic country, shares its maritime borders with ten nations. These include India, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Palau, the Philippines, Timor Leste, and Papua New Guinea.

India and Indonesia are key maritime players in the Indo-Pacific, a region that not only hosts nine of the ten busiest seaports in the world but also contains vital sea lines of communication (SLOCs). Additionally, around 60 percent of global maritime trade flows through this area.

Dr. Ian Montratama stated to the Russian media on Friday, May 17, that Indonesia’s interest in the BrahMos deal with India is driven by the Indonesian Navy’s need for anti-ship missiles to replace their previous Yakhont missiles.

Yakhont missiles, which Indonesia used previously, are the export version of Russia’s Onyx missiles, the same model on which the BrahMos is based.

Additionally, Indonesia has employed Chinese-made C-705 medium-range and C-802 subsonic anti-ship cruise missiles.

The academic suggested that Indonesia’s deal for BrahMos missiles could be greatly enhanced by a Transfer of Technology (ToT) agreement with India.

Such an agreement would not only strengthen Indonesia’s defense capabilities but also empower local defense industries like PT. Pindad (Persero) to develop a range of ballistic missiles, Montratama concluded in his remarks reported by Sputnik.

PT. Pindad (Persero) is a prominent state-owned enterprise in Indonesia, specializing in military and commercial manufacturing. It produces a variety of defense products, including small arms, artillery systems, and armored vehicles, supporting Indonesia’s strategic defense capabilities and bolstering its self-reliance in military technology.

(Views expressed in the article are of author’s own and do not reflect the editorial stance of Business Upturn)