New Delhi: With the completion of protracted
talks between India and Russia to fix the cost of Admiral
Gorshkov aircraft carrier, the Navy on Saturday said it was waiting
for the government`s approval to the final price.
"I cannot speak anything about the final pricing till the
government`s approval is announced," Navy Chief Admiral Nirmal
Verma told reporters here.
"But, yes, for any of these major induction programmes,
we have a price negotiation committee, which has done its job
and a mutually agreed price has been arrived at," he said
after a visit to the NCC`s Republic Day Parade Camp.
During Prime Minister Manmohan Singh`s visit to Moscow
last month, the two countries finalised the price for the
repair and refit work on the aircraft carrier that was bought
by India in 2004 and rechristened INS Vikramaditya.
Though the ship was bought for USD 974 million at that
time, the Russian shipyard Sevmash hiked its costs for the
repair and refit work to demand an additional 2.9 billion in a
two-year period since 2007.
However, after working out the costs of repair and refit,
India was willing to pay only about USD 2.2 billion. The
discussions between the two sides ended during Singh`s visit
and a "mutually agreed" final price has now been arrived at,
though none in the government or the Navy is willing to hazard
a guess on the figure at the moment.