Friday, May 24, 2024

Defence Ministry Inks Contracts For Next Generation Naval Vessels To Achieve Indigenisation

By Staff Correspondent

India’s Ministry of Defence has taken a significant stride towards achieving ‘Aatmanirbharta’ in defence, as it inked contracts with Indian shipyards on March 30, 2023, for the procurement of 11 Next Generation Offshore Patrol Vessels and six Next Generation Missile Vessels, at a total cost of approximately Rs 19,600 crore.

Under the Buy (Indian-IDDM) category, the acquisition of 11 Next Generation Offshore Patrol Vessels was entrusted to Goa Shipyard Ltd (GSL) and Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE), Kolkata, at a combined cost of Rs 9,781 crore. Of the 11 vessels, seven will be indigenously designed, developed and manufactured by GSL, while four will be the handiwork of GRSE. These vessels are expected to be delivered commencing September 2026.

The acquisition of these vessels is expected to help the Indian Navy bolster its combat capability and fulfil various operational requirements such as Anti-Piracy, Counter-Infiltration, Anti-Poaching, Anti-Trafficking, Non-Combatant Evacuation Operations, Search and Rescue (SAR), Protection of Offshore Assets etc. Furthermore, the construction of these ships is expected to generate employment of 110 lakh man-days over a period of seven and a half years.

Meanwhile, Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) was awarded the contract for the procurement of six Next Generation Missile Vessels (NGMV) at a cost of Rs 9,805 crore, with the delivery of these vessels set to begin from March 2027. The NGMVs will be heavily armed war vessels incorporating stealth, high speed, and offensive capability. Their primary role will be to provide offensive capability against enemy warships, merchantmen, and land targets.

The NGMVs will be capable of conducting Maritime Strike Operations and Anti-Surface Warfare Operations, and will be a potent instrument of sea denial for enemy ships, especially at choke points. In a defensive role, these vessels will be employed for Local Naval Defence operations and seaward defence of Offshore Development Areas. It is anticipated that the construction of these ships will generate employment of 45 lakh man-days over a period of nine years.

The indigenous manufacturing of these vessels is expected to encourage the active participation of Indian shipbuilding and associated industries, including MSMEs. With the majority of the equipment and systems sourced from indigenous manufacturers, these vessels will proudly represent the essence of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’.

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