ThyssenKrupp bullish on defence sector

Amrita Nair Ghaswalla Mumbai | Updated on January 22, 2018 Published on December 02, 2015


TKMS engaging with India on two submarine programmes

With Germany viewing the ‘Make in India’ initiative as a big opportunity for its industrial firms and German Chancellor Angela Merkel during her recent visit emphasising that Germany is keen to support the initiative, submarine builder Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems is ready to transfer knowhow to help in the manufacture of submarines, according to a senior official.

Defence pipeline

Gurnad S Sodhi, Managing Director of ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) India, said TKMS has been supporting India’s indigenous defence industry for over a quarter of a century.

“Angela Merkel spoke about Germany’s support for ‘Make in India’. TKMS is a thriving example of this cooperation since the 1980s,” he said.

India has been seeking transfer of technology from global players to build its defence pipeline. TKMS is engaging in India on two submarine programmes: Project P-75 (I) diesel-electric acquisition, and Shishumar-class (Type 209/1500) upgrade.

The Shishumar-class submarines were built in the 1980s, under an agreement between India and HDW (Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft), a German shipbuilding company, part of the TKMS Group.

The first pair was built in Germany and delivered in 1986, while the second pair was built at Mazagon Dock Limited (MDL) in Mumbai, and delivered in the early 1990s. The MDL pair was built under a technology-transfer agreement. “The very fact that INS Shalki and INS Shankul were made in India by an Indian shipyard under a technology transfer agreement, is proof that TKMS has been supporting India’s indigenous defence industry,” said Sodhi, adding that the company has been aiding the industry for several decades.

The German defence company is now offering its HDW Class 214 submarines for the Indian Navy’s $7.97 billion P-75 (I) project.

Submarine tech

The project seeks to build six new generation diesel electric submarines that will feature advanced technologies, advanced detection range and combat management system, stealth land-attack capability, besides better sensors for optimum performance. The weapon system will be a mix of torpedoes and missiles. The six new submarines are expected to be bigger than the 1,800-ton Scorpene class.

As Sodhi pointed out, “For new requirements under projects such as P-75 (I), we look forward to partner with Indian companies to bring the most advanced technologies that are currently available in the world. This would encompass inter alia robust transfer of technology, training, meeting the offset obligations, etc.”

He added, “We would rather define this as a ‘no-hold barred’ transfer of technology, in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Make in India push.”

The official said TKMS is willing to bring its expertise in cutting edge areas to India, engage in a strong industrial partnership, and co-develop solutions with local partners to meet the country’s needs.

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Published on December 02, 2015
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