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NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian engineering firm Larsen & Toubro signed a deal with South Korea's Hanwha Techwin to supply artillery guns to the Indian army in a deal estimated to be 4.5 billion rupees ($696.38 million), the two firms said on Friday.
Jayant Patil, head of the defence and aerospace wing of L&T, said the two companies will jointly manufacture the self-propelled howitzer - a boost for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Make-in-India drive to push domestic industry.
The Indian army had chosen L&T to supply 100 guns, Patil said, adding the contract will be among the first under the indigenisation campaign aimed at reducing the military's dependence on foreign imports.
The military's bigger projects such as acquisition of fighter planes, helicopters and submarines are making slower progress because of the government's insistence on involvement of local players.
South Korea's Minister for Defence Acquisition Program Administration, Chang Myoung Jin, said Seoul was looking to significantly expand defence ties with India.
($1 = 64.6200 Indian rupees)
Reporting by Sanjeev Miglani; Editing by Sunil Nair