To further indigenize the Indian Navy and to promote the Make in India initiative, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has issued four shipbuilding Requests for Proposal (RFP) amounting to Rs 15,000 crore for the acquisition of various ships and craft for the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard.
The RFP for six Next Generation Missile Vessels (NGMVs) has been issued to seven shipyards including Reliance Naval and Engineering Limited; Cochin Shipyard Ltd; L&T Shipyard; DPSUs: Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited (GRSE); Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL); Hindustan Shipyard Limited (HSL); Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL).
For eight Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs) and 12 Air Cushion Vehicles (ACVs) and eight Missile-cum-Ammunition Barges have been issued to shortlisted Indian shipyards. The RFP for ACVs also includes the initial requirement for six ACVs of the Indian Army.
According to the MoD, more RFPs for more shipbuilding projects are in the pipeline and are expected to be issued in the next few months.
The Ministry along with the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard had undertaken an exercise in an effort to make the process of qualifying the shipyards for the issue of RFPs for shipbuilding projects of various ships and craft of the Navy and the Coast Guard more objective. Steps were also taken to encourage participation by a larger number of Indian shipyards.
The outcome of such an exercise was rationalisation of guidelines for capacity assessment of shipyards that have been promulgated recently. Thus paving the way for issue of RFPs for a large number of shipbuilding projects that have been pending.
Also, in an effort to encourage smaller shipyards, participation in the projects with the anticipated annual outflow of less than Rs 75 crore has been restricted to smaller shipyards having an average annual turnover less than Rs 500 crore. Besides the wide application in military and coastal surveillance, the Air Cushion Vehicles have huge potential in the commercial sector like civil transportation, disaster management, and tourism.
And to encourage joint development of design by Indian Shipyards in collaboration with a foreign design house of ACVs, Indian content has been included in the RFP for ACV.