By: Vivek Raghuvanshi
NEW DELHI — The Indian Navy has issued a request for information for six air-independent propulsion-enabled submarines under Project 75I, a program worth more than $12 billion. However, analysts say the process will take time since the purchase would take place under the new Strategic Parters policy.
The RFI was issued to six foreign shipyards, including Rubin Design Bureau of Russia, Naval Group (formerly DCNS) of France, Navantia of Spain, Saab of Sweden, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries of Japan and ThyssenKrupp of Germany, eliciting a response on AIP-enabled submarine capabilities.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is a surprise addition, according to an Indian Ministry of Defence official, because Japanese submarines can be expensive.
Once the overseas shipyards respond to the RFI, a formal request for proposal will be issued. Based on the RFP responses, the MoD will shortlist the shipyards, which could take a minimum of two years, the MoD official said.
A strategic partner will be selected from domestic shipyards, and the companies will join to compete for the project under the Strategic Partners policy
“As per the policy document, the overseas shipyards would be shortlisted based on range, depth and scope of technology transfer offered in identified areas, extent of indigenous content proposed [and] extent of ecosystem of Indian vendors/manufacturers,” said Jayant Damodar Patil, the head of Larsen & Toubro’s defense and aerospace division.
”MoD would short list three to four overseas shipyards from amongst the six based on the above criterion,” Patil added.
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