New Delhi: German conglomerate Thyssenkrupp is keen to build its Type 214 submarines for the Navy under the Project 75i or P75i, which seeks to build six new-generation diesel electric submarines as and when the Defence Ministry calls in the bids.
Thyssenkrupp Group’s marine systems division will be bidding for the USD8-billion project. “We are very keen to offer our HDW Class 214 submarines for the Navy. We will be bidding for the P75i, having already delivered four non-nuclear submarines to the Navy in the late 1980s and early 1990s,” Thyssenkrupp India managing director and chief executive Ravi Kirpalani told reporters.
Kirpalani joined the regional headquarters of Thyssenkrupp India as MD and chief executive in March 2016 after spending over 16 years at lubes major Castrol India.
While the current Scorpene class of submarines are being built at the Mazagaon Docks in Mumbai, no decision has been taken where the more advanced diesel electric submarines will be built, under the P75i project.
When asked whether his company is comfortable working with a local partner, Kirpalani said, “We will be happy to collaborate with any local partner to build the submarines,” adding the bidding conditions make it mandatory.
Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems is one of the leading system providers for non-nuclear submarines and high-end naval vessels across the globe. It stands for marine competence, innovative technologies and comprehensive and reliable service.
P751 is an extension of the ongoing Project75 where the French defence major DCNS is the technology collaborator and is building six Scorpene class of submarines at the Mazagaon Docks, while the P75i, wherein ‘i’ stands for India, is aimed at building a new generation of more advanced class of diesel electric non-nuke submarines.
Project75 was originally conceived in the early 1990s under the 30-year submarine building programme and was cleared in 1999. The first project was the P75, under which six Scorpene submarines are being built in Mumbai with collaboration of French major DCNS.
The Project 75i was first announced in 2010 under which the winning bidder will have to enter into a tripartite agreement with one of the government-run docks, a local private partner.
Since nothing progressed, the Modi government last December expedited the move and decided to call for RFQs. It has also in June 2016 allowed 100 per cent FDI in defence production including submarine building. But the P75i is out of this.