NEW DELHI — Eyeing the Indian Navy's plan to build six nuclear attack submarines, private sector Reliance Defence has announced it will plans to set up a dedicated shipyard close to the Indian Navy's shipyard at Visakhapatnam to build nuclear submarines.
The shipyard to build the nuclear submarines will "be co-located with the Indian Navy's strategic base and Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC's) nuclear facility at Rambilli 70 kilometers south of Vizag," according to a Sunday statement by the official release January 10 of Reliance Defence, Ltd, a subsidiary of Reliance Infrastructure owned by billionaire Anil Ambani.
Speaking at a summit in Vishakhapatnam, Anil Ambani said the facility will be built with at an initial investment of $757 million, adding that the facility could lead to the creation of an a multi-tier array of defense ancillaries with further investments of up to $1.5 billion.
Commenting on the status of the Indian Navy's aircraft carrier and submarines, Ambani said: "The US today has 10 aircraft-carrier groups operating around the world to project its power and protect its interests and was on course to add another three, while India had barely one.
"Similarly, while the US has 72 submarines and China 69, India has a small fleet of 17 submarines."
A Defence Ministry of Defence (MoD) official, however, said the Indian Navy will invest up to $45 billion to add new warships, submarines and aircraft carriers in the next 15fifteen years.
"The government has given approvals for six new nuclear attack submarines in early 2015 and the Indian Navy aims to have 200 warships by 2027," the MoD official said.
Vivek Raghuvanshi is the India correspondent for Defense News.