Defence ministry issues RFP for construction of six conventional submarines -

Defence ministry issues RFP for construction of six conventional submarines

The ministry of defence (MoD) has issued Request of Proposal (RFP) for construction of six fuel cell-based Air Independent Propulsion Plant (AIP) fitted conventional submarines for the Indian Navy, the first acquisition programme under the Strategic Partnership Model. 

The RFP was issued to shortlisted strategic partners, ie, Indian applicant companies for the project – Mazagaon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) and Larsen & Tubro (L&T). The project, called ‘Project 75 (India) [P-75(I)]’ is estimated to cot over Rs40,000 crore. 

Project-75(I) envisages indigenous construction of six modern conventional submarines (including associated shore support, engineering support package, training and spares package) with contemporary equipment, weapons and sensors including fuel-cell based AIP (Air Independent Propulsion Plant), advanced torpedoes, modern missiles and state of the art countermeasure systems. This would provide a major boost to the indigenous design and construction capability of submarines in India, in addition to bringing in the latest submarine design and technologies as part of the project. 

The REF eas issued after receipt of responses to the Expression of Interest (EoI), shortlisting of potential Strategic Partners (SPs) and foreign OEMs. The shortlisted SPs to whom the RFP has been issued would be collaborating with any of the shortlisted foreign OEMs, viz, Naval Group-France, TKMS-Germany, JSC ROE-Russia, Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co Ltd-South Korea and Navantia-Spain. These five foreign firms are world leaders in the field of conventional submarine design, construction and all other related technologies. The foreign OEMs will be the technology partner in the SP Model. Foreign OEMs will enable SP for construction of submarines, achieving high levels of indigenisation, and ToT for various technologies. These OEMs would enable setting up of dedicated manufacturing lines for these submarines in India by providing ToT for submarine design and other technologies. 

The project would not only aid in boosting the core submarine/ship building industry but would also greatly enhance manufacturing/industrial sector, especially the MSME, by development of an industrial eco-system for manufacture of associated spares/systems/equipment related to submarines. In order to achieve these objectives, the RFP has key features like mandatory level of indigenous manufacture of platforms, ToT for design/ manufacture/ maintenance of submarines and a few critical equipment and systems, setting up of an eco-system in India for such indigenisation and incentivisation for other key technologies, etc. 

The overall aim would be to progressively build indigenous capabilities in the public/private sector to design, develop and manufacture complex weapon systems for the future needs of the Armed Forces. This will be an important step towards meeting broader national objectives, encouraging self reliance and aligning the defence sector with the ‘Make in India’ initiative of the government, says a defence ministry release.

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