DCNS, a leading French firm in naval defence, is looking for tie-ups with Indian companies for production of equipment for Scorpene submarines, six of which will be delivered to the Indian Navy between the end of 2013 and 2018.

Disclosing this to The Hindu, its executive vice-president and Chief Operating Officer, Bernard Planchais, and Managing Director of DCNS India, the company’s Indian subsidiary, Bernard Busisson, said that around $75 million worth of equipment for the submarines would be produced indigenously by entering into partnerships with Indian companies.

The company had already entered into contracts with three Indian firms, including Hyderabad-based SEC.

They said more than 100 Indian companies were identified for prospective tie-ups. Following an evaluation, discussions were on with more than 30 firms. He said there were no offset clauses when the Scorpene deal was signed. But DCNS was committed towards manufacturing indigenous equipment by local companies through transfer of technology.

Describing “as very good” the progress made so far on the submarine project, Mr. Planchais said the pressure hulls of the six submarines would be ready by the end of 2012, and the first submarine would be launched by the end of 2013. The first submarine is expected to be commissioned into the Navy by 2015.

DCNS is also bidding for Indian Navy’s requirement for ‘LPD’ (Landing Platform Dock).

He said the company was making equipment for tapping ocean energy. The first prototype of a 16-meter wide turbine to produce tidal energy was ready. Each turbine would generate two MW of power. It was also building a prototype (one MW) for a floating wind turbine, which would be ready by the end of the year.

With the company keen to expand its footprint in India, Mr. Buisson hoped that the Indian government, in its 2012 Defence Procurement Policy, would allow foreign companies to fulfil offset obligations through non-military projects even when the main agreement is related to military projects.

More In: Companies | Business