Jubilee of Pakistan Ordnance Factories
Date of Issue (December 28, 2001)
1. The Pakistan Ordnance Factories, the premier defence industry and the lifeline of over half million strong armed forces, is completing its 50 years of existence on 28th December 2001.
2. During their colonial rule in India, the British raised 16 Ordnance Factories. At the time of creation of Pakistan in 1947, we were unlucky that all the sixteen factories fell to Indian share. Newly created Pakistan with fragile state apparatus and fragmented armed forces had absolutely no arms and ammunition manufacturing facility to meet the security challenges to its sovereignty. The first Prime Minister of Pakistan, Khan Liaqat Ali Khan immediately realized this imbalance and issued directive within four months of creation of Pakistan to establish an ordnance factory to manufacture 303 rifle and its ammunition in Rawalpindi. Subsequently, the foundation stone of four workshops was laid by the second Prime Minister of Pakistan Khawaja Nazim ud din in the small town of Wah in December 1951. This was the first step towards the establishment of mother defence industry in Pakistan.
3. Today by the grace of God Almighty, we have fourteen big factories at Wah which are taking care of almost 100% requirements of our armed forces. This modern defence industrial complex, which is the oldest & largest in Pakistan defence production industrial system, later helped many other sister defence production setups to flourish. Resultantly today Pakistan has a reasonably good defence production potential in which Pakistan Ordnance Factories occupies the central position.
Organization and Production capabilities.
4. The factories are under the control of a Board consisting of a Chairman, a Financial Advisor and two career technical members. The factories are headed by Managing Directors who are quite independent within the frame work of policy guide lines determined by the POF Board. POF was created with a vision to provide arms & ammunition during peace & war to the armed forces of Pakistan and has fulfilled its commitment by continuously honouring the targets assigned to it. The initial products of POF were of British origin and standards. Soon American products and standards were introduced, followed by German and Chinese. Now POF is working on NATO and other internationally recognized standards. The amalgam of technology from various sources has resulted in the blossoming of a high standard of workmanship and quality control. After 50 years of continuous growth and development POF is a sprawling industrial complex of the following 14 Factories and 7 subsidiaries:-
5. The two main subsidiaries namely Wah Industries Ltd and Wah Nobel Ltd. were established to utilise spare capacities of Factories for commercial applications but later on Hi-Tech Plastics Ltd, Wah Nobel Chemical Ltd, Wah Nobel Detonators Ltd and Attock Chemicals Ltd were set up to meet the requirement of civil market. These subsidiaries are earning significant profits annually thus adding to the national wealth. POF produce approximately 70 major products for supply of Army, Navy and Air Force. The main products include automatic rifles, machine guns, sub machine guns, anti aircraft guns, complete range of mortar and artillery ammunitions, aircraft and anti aircraft ammunitions, tank and anti-tank arnmunitions, bombs, grenades, anti-tank mines, pyrotechnics and rockets etc. Apart from raw materials, all other inputs needed for the manufacture of arms and ammunition such as brass, gilding metal and clad steel, steel products, carbide and tungsten alloy products, fuzes, rocket and artillery propellants, all types of explosives are produced in POF.
6. The past 50 years have seen a breathtaking expansion and modernization. POF which started with the manufacture of 303 rifles and its ammunition with an old plant of world war II vintage, has since moved into the era of state of the art technology, computer aided design and computer aided manufacture. POF were confined mostly to the traditional products in the first 15 to 20 years but after passing through different phases of expansion, diversification and consolidation, POF has come of age by taking a quantum jump to the modern state of art manufacturing technology During the last ten years or so POF has emerged as an armament manufacturer of international repute. POF is alive to the the emerging technologies in armament production and interacts with the world renowned manufacturers and R&d establishments at different forums to keep itself abreast of the latest developments.
International Quality Standards.
7. Quality control has always been the hall mark of POF products. This is in built in the nature of the manufacturing processes. POF produces arms & ammo of German US, British and Chinese origin strictly to International standards of acceptance. In 1999, M/s Moody International of UK awarded the ISO 9001 certificate to all the 14 major industries and 6 department of POF. Work on ISO 14000 certification is in progress and POF is aiming to obtain ISO 14000 certification by May 2002.
8. Achievement of ISO 9001 certification for quality, POF's participation in various International defence exhibitions and its effective marketing strategy has earned it an international recognition. POF has been at one time or the other exporting arms and ammunition to 30 countries around the globe. During the last three years, POF recorded high exports of arms & ammo and was awarded the FPCCI trophy for exports. Military delegations and heads of States of various countries have been visiting POF and taking with them an ever-lasting impression of the wide range of products and their excellent quality.
Self-reliance through development of vending industries.
9. In view of the tight foreign exchange situation and sanctions imposed by developed countries, POF management has undertaken indigenization programmes aimed at achieving self-sufficiency in raw materials, semi finished goods and other products. In the process, POF has saved millions in foreign exchange. Instead of expanding its own facilities, POF management as a matter of policy, encourages the development of local vending industry in order to utilize their assets for manufacturing parts of arms and ammunition. The enhanced interaction between the private and the public sector has not only created a better environment for indigenization but also has resulted in utilization of POF surplus capacity of plant & machinery for civil production.
10. The present century is an era of information technology. POF after modernization of its manufacturing facilities is currently working on a programme for computerization of its systems, procedures, data and processes. It is intended to computerize and link all the 14 factories. Accordingly a Mega Computerization Project has been started to achieve the objective of On-line Integrated Computerized Systems in POF for enhancing efficiency and quality in its functions and activities.