New Delhi: The government on Monday said it has undertaken a large scale modernisation of defence shipyards along with steps to encourage private sector participation in these projects to reduce the time needed for constructing warships.
In a written reply to Lok Sabha, Defence Minister A K Antony gave details of the warships being built at the four defence shipyards -- Mazagon Dock Limited-Mumbai (MDL), Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Ltd-Kolkata (GRSE), Goa Shipyard Ltd (GSL) and Hindustan Shipyard Ltd-Andhra Pradesh (HSL).
"All the four defence shipyards have initiated major modernisation program by pooling up resources from the project based funding as well as their internal accruals," he said.
He said the government has taken steps to encourage private sector participation "in construction of warships by amending the Defence Procurement Procedure".
The Defence Ministry has also promulgated joint venture guidelines, in addition to the existing ones, to ensure that requirement of the forces can be met indigenously, with requisite quality and within the stipulated timelines, he said.
On the reasons for delays in various projects, Antony said, "Warships building is a very complex activity with a long gestation period. Latest technologies and systems that evolve during construction period have to be incorporated after making necessary changes in the existing design."
Considering the effect of global technological denial regime on the industry, he said, "It takes time for all the stakeholders to evolve indigenous solutions."
Antony also noted that "ancillary shipbuilding industry" in the country is also in a "development phase and timely availability of various equipment that go into shipbuilding is affected."