French defense company withdraws from Indian P-75I submarine project | MorungExpress


INS Vagsheer, the sixth and final Scorpene submarine of Project 75, was launched in Mumbai on April 20, 2022. Photograph: Kunal Patil/PTI Photo

New Delhi, May 3 (PTI) French company Naval Group said on Tuesday it was unable to participate in the Centre’s P-75I project, under which six conventional submarines are to be built in the country for the Indian Navy, due to conditions mentioned in the request for proposals (RFP) related to air independence. propulsion system (AIP).

Naval Group’s announcement comes a day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Paris where he is due to meet recently re-elected French President Emmanuel Macron.

The AIP system allows a conventional submarine to remain submerged in water at higher speeds for a longer period of time.

In June last year, the Ministry of Defense cleared the P-75I project and subsequently tenders were issued to two shortlisted Indian companies – the private company Larsen and Toubro and the company d ‘State Mazagaon Docks Limited.

The two Indian companies (known as strategic partners) must partner with one of the five shortlisted foreign companies – ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (Germany), Navantia (Spain) and Naval Group (France), Daewoo (South Korea) and Rosoboronexport ( Russia ) – then respond to the tender, according to the Ministry of Defense.

The Rs 43,000 crore contract will be awarded by the Ministry of Defense following a detailed assessment of the responses sent by the two strategic partners.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Laurent Videau, Country Director and Managing Director of Naval Group India, said: “Due to certain conditions of the tender, the two strategic partners were unable to convey the request to us and a few other FOEMs (foreign original equipment manufacturers) and so we were unable to place an official bid for the project.

Naval Group has always been ready to offer best-in-class and suitable solution for the Indian Navy’s P75I project, being fully in line with the Aatmanirbhar Bharat principle, he said.

“However, this call for tenders requires that the AIP (air independent propulsion) fuel cell be proven at sea, which is not yet the case for us since the French Navy does not use such a propulsion system,” he said.

Nevertheless, Naval Group is strengthening its existing commitments and looking forward to a closer association with India, he said.

“Our aim and efforts are to continue our collaboration with Indian industry in realizing the vision of Indian government by supporting Indian Navy for further development and future projects (maintenance, high tech tools, native AIP, upgrades progressives of the submarine designed by Scorpene, heavy weight torpedoes, bigger ships, etc.),” he mentioned.

India is one of the biggest arms importers in the world.

The Center wants to reduce its reliance on imported military platforms and has boosted domestic defense manufacturing.

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