India cancels Rs 32,000 crore minesweeper warship project with South Korea

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Minesweeper-warship-projectIndia has called off the Rs 32,000 minesweepers project with South Korea, a latest media report said on Monday.

In what can be termed as a damaging blow to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s flagship ‘Make in India’ programme, the specialised warship deal with Seoul didn’t materialise due to differences over cost, technology transfer among other issues, a Times of India report said on Monday.

The news comes at a time, when India is dealing with aggressive China in the Indian Ocean regon with multiple sightings of Chinese ships being reported in recent times.

To guard its East and West Coasts, New Delhi needs 24  mine counter-measure vessels or MCMVs. But, at present, Indian Navy has just four such specialised warships, the report said.

The deal, which was supposed to be finalised last year, would have helped India to start building the warships at the Goa Shipyard Limited facility.

The advanced warships are used to detect, track and destroy underwater mines and keep the sea lanes safe.

With deal failing with Seoul, Goa Shipyard has been asked to issue a new global expression of interest (EoI) for the MCMVs. The fresh RFP (request for proposal) or tender will follow thereafter, the Times of India report said.

In 2015, the Centre had nominated the Goa Shipyard Limited to build minesweepers in partnership with a foreign shipyard for giving an impetus to the Make in India programme.