Foreign Firms Set to Submit Proposals for Navy Missile

Indian Navy

New Delhi: Several foreign companies, including European defence major MBDA and Swedish firm SAAB, are set to submit their proposals to the Indian Navy, which is looking to buy short-range surface-to-air missile (SRSAM) systems to replace its Israeli Barak-1 air defence systems on the Kamorta class corvettes.

Though it was initially meant to be a Make in India project, the Request for Proposal (RFP) has been issued under the Buy (Global) category. The ‘Buy (Global)’ category refers to the outright purchase of equipment from foreign or Indian vendors. In case of procurement through foreign vendors, the government-to-government route may be adopted for equipment meeting strategic or long-term requirements.

The last date for the submission of bids is October 17.

The Navy plans to buy the SRSAM systems for four ships — about 150-odd missiles.

Each SRSAM system will have a command and control system, a fire control system, a command link radar and a launcher for a particular number of missiles.

It is hoped that once this contract is signed, new generation missile vessels and corvettes will be equipped with the same system, a project that would be worth several billion dollars.

The Navy will be using the SRSAM along with other air defence systems against supersonic and subsonic anti-ship missiles, precision-guided munitions, a wide range of aircraft, including fighters and bombers, UAVs, swarms of Fast Inshore Attack Craft among others.

Besides MBDA and the SAAB, as also the Russians, others expected to participate in the bidding process include the Israel Aerospace Industries, the Rafael Advanced Defense Systems of Israel and Samsung of South Korea.

American firms are unlikely to offer bids because of the cost involved.