(This was originally posted in Times Of India)
Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) began construction of the second advanced guided-missile frigate for the Indian Navy on Friday. The keel for the frigate was laid by vice-chief of naval staff, vice-admiral G Ashok Kumar. GSL aims to deliver the first warship in 2026 and the second six months after the first.
The ship under construction is part of the indigenous shipbuilding program being executed under a technology transfer program with Russia’s Yantar Shipyard. In 2018, India and Russia signed a suite of shipbuilding contracts regarding four Project 11356 frigates, with two ships being built by Yantar Shipyard and two being built by GSL based on technology shared by Russia.
“There are considerable changes in the design of the ships to be constructed at GSL as significant indigenous content is being fitted on these ships,” said Kumar while speaking on the occasion. The hulls of the two ships are being built with indigenous steel. The ministry of defence and GSL inked the contract for the two ships in January 2019.
“Keel-laying is a major milestone activity in the construction of the ship, symbolizing formal commencement of the construction process,” said GSL chairman and MD, B B Nagpal. “It is for the first time that these vessels of such vast complexity are being constructed locally,” Kumar said.