SAAB out, South Korean Company in for the conventional submarines for the Indian Navy

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Updated: Sep 27, 2019 3:20 PM

A top diplomat confirmed that the South Korean Company has pitched its KSS-3 submarine for the Rs 45,000 crore proposal of the Indian Navy.

SAAB, South Korean company, indian navy, Expression of Interest, submarines, Project 75I, KSS3 submarine, Make in India, Act East Policy, Ministry of DefenceThe Project 75I is the second project which will be processed under the Strategic Partnership Model (SP), and the submarines will be built in India through technology transfer. (Representational photo: IE)

South Korean company Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering has responded to Indian Navy’s Expression of Interest (EoI) for six advanced conventional submarines under Project-75I (India).

A top diplomat confirmed that the South Korean Company has pitched its KSS-3 submarine for the Rs 45,000 crore proposal of the Indian Navy.

The responses by the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) opened by the Indian Navy on Sept 24 included the Naval Group of France which is already involved in the `Scorpene’ submarine for the Indian Navy under Project-75; Navantia of Spain has offered S-80 (Issac Peral class); TKMS of Germany — Type 218 (Invincible Class), Rosboronexport of Russia for the Amur.

Also read| INS Khanderi: Commissioning of second Scorpene-class submarine to add to navy’s teeth

The Project 75I is the second project which will be processed under the Strategic Partnership Model (SP), and the submarines will be built in India through technology transfer. The Strategic Partnership model is to ensure building capacity in Indian Industry which will help in the manufacturing of major military platforms. The OEM will have to tie up with an Indian company for manufacturing under the Make in India initiative. The first project under the SP model is the acquisition of 111 Naval Utility Helicopters.

Indian Navy Scorpene class submarine INS Khanderi: It’s a deadly deep-sea predator

Due to non-clarity on certain points in the Strategic Partnership model, there was a delay in the responses from the companies to the request for information issued in 2017. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) issued the Expression of Interest this June.

While the response from the South Korean company was at the last minute, the Swedish defence major SAAB withdrew from the race citing prior commitments.

Response from the South Korean Company Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering came in last after the Ministry of Defence allowed them to submit its bid late. In line with the government’s `Act East Policy’ defence minister Rajnath Singh recently visited South Korea and invited the defence majors to participate in various defence projects.

South Korea considers India as a major power and a key partner in the region and India looks at South Korea an important partner under the `Act East Policy’. Defence manufacturers from that country are keen to join hands with India in various projects and are open to transferring total technologies as there are no laws with a state otherwise. The bilateral relations have been elevated to Special Strategic Partnership in 2015, and both have inked an agreement for deepening cooperation in naval shipbuilding.

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