First Scorpene submarine would be ready by 2014: French envoy
Panaji: The first of the six Scorpene submarines ordered by the Indian Navy from French firm DCNS in 2005, as part of the technology transfer between the two countries, will be rolled out by 2014, France's top diplomat in India said on Saturday.
"The first submarine would be ready by 2014, heralding an important and strategic tie-up between both the nations on the defence front", said Francois Richier, Ambassador of France in India, adding the rest of five submarines would be delivered every subsequent year.
"Such kind of submarines are important for Indian Navy considering the long coast it has to guard", he said.
Richier is in Goa to visit French Destroyer 'FNS Montcalm' which is here as the part of training exercises with the Indian Navy.
The six Scorpenes are being constructed at the Mazagon Dockyards Limited (MDL) in Mumbai under Project-75 under technology transfer from French firm DCNS.
The government approval for construction of the six submarines was accorded in September 2005 at a total cost of Rs 18,798 crore and the contract was signed in October that year.
The project cost was revised to Rs 23,562 crore in February 2010, along with revision in delivery schedule.
"The induction of Scorpene submarines would enhance Indian Navy's capabilities to conduct exercises in the open sea. These are the last generation of conventional submarines", a senior French naval officer said.
Designed for coastal defence against under-water threats, the 1,750-tonne submarine-submarine-killer (SSK) Scorpene is 67 meters in length and can dive to a depth of 300 meters. Ccording to French naval officials, the submarine can stay at sea for 45 days with a crew of 31.
The standard version has six torpedo tubes and anti-shipping missile launchers.