French state-owned shipbuilder Naval Constructions Directorate (DCN) said Dec. 2 it was on the brink of signing a deal to give India the technology and know-how to build six Scorpene-class diesel submarines.
“We have been waiting for this contract for a year. It is caught up in Indian bureaucracy,” DCN’s chief executive, Jean-Marie Poimboeuf said.
“I hope we can announce the signature of the contract in the weeks to come,” he said.
Poimboeuf made the comments on the sidelines of a ceremony marking the hull-soldering of the first of two Scorpene submarines that are being built for Malaysia’s navy. That deal also provides for the training of 150 Malaysian submariners.
Poimboeuf said other prospects on the slate included a deal with Brazil, and he said a project for Singapore was taking shape.
According to Indian media reports, the Scorpene contract is worth around $2 billion (1.6 billion euros) and involves the six submarines being built in Mumbai.
The vessels, although diesel-powered, are designed to be modulable and could be adapted to fit a nuclear power plant, which matches India’s long-term defense strategy.