L&T not to compete with Chinese shipyards

| Updated on: Sep 20, 2011
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Larsen & Toubro will not enter into low-end competition (of building regular commercial vessels) with Chinese shipyards, but will compete with Japanese and Korean shipyards in building ‘specialised ships' at its Kattupalli facility near Chennai, according to a company official.

“Our strength will be automation that will give 10-12 per cent cost competiveness over Japanese and Korean shipyards,” said Mr M.V. Kotwal, President, Operations and Member of the Board, L&T. In the first phase, around Rs 4,000 crore is being invested in the facility that will start rolling out ships from January, he said.

China, the world's largest manufacturers of ships, is known for rolling out huge number of commercial ships, including large-size container and bulk ships. But the Japanese and Korean shipyards are known for building ‘specialised ships' such as war ships, he said on the sidelines of a seminar here.

Design centre

L&T has set up a ‘marine design centre' in Chennai to design ships at the Kattupalli shipyard, which is at present building high interceptor boats (capable to reach 40 knots per hour) for the Indian Coast Guard.

The company has won an order from the Coast Guard to build 36 interceptor boats.

Of this, nearly 20 will be built at its Hazira shipyard and the balance at Kattupalli, he said.

However, the plan is to build specialised vessels such as large-size warships, car carriers, submarines, naval offshore patrol vessels, fast patrol vessels and corvette.

In future, the company will think about building LNG ships. Mr Kotwal said after a due diligence of the entire Indian coast, the company chose Kattupalli to have the shipyard for its proximity to the international shipping lane and the availability of talent in the region.

At present, Colombo and Singapore are two major international destinations for ship repairs while Kattupalli will be third in the region, he said.

Published on March 12, 2018

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