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Indian Navy $5 Billion MCMV Program runs aground

Indian Navy's $ 5 billion program to build 12 high-tech generation Mine Counter-Measure Vessels (MCMV) cannot now progress further, according to the media report, since Kangnam Corporation of South Korea has practically refused to provide a performance guarantee for supervision of construction of the vessels by the state-owned Goa Shipyard.

The design and technology transfer agreement worth over $ 1 billion with Kangnam Corporation for 12 MCMVs in India is "not in sight as of now" an MoD official added. "There are several parameters of the technology transfer which need to be finalized before the agreement with Kangnam is signed." 

"The real bone of contention is we want full intellectual property rights of the MCMVs which is not acceptable to the selected design and technology partner," the MoD official disclosed.

An MCMV vessel is a type of naval ship particularly designed to locate and destroy naval mines; in effect, it combines the double role of a minesweeper and minehunter.

With the goal of replacing the current outdated Russian made MCMVs the MoD nominated Goa Shipyard to build 12 MCMVs in 2015 which in turn shortlisted Kangnam Corporation to transfer technology to build the vessels since India does not have the technical capabilities to construct these specialized vessels which will detect different kinds of underwater mines.

"It is very important to build an indigenous capability to build these specialized vessels even if it means paying steep price to acquire technology from Kangnam Corporation," a senior Indian Navy official said, adding that the acquisition of MCMV is already delayed with 24 vessels needed.

"The acquisition of much needed MCMV has suffered in the MoD where the procurement process is very arduous and cumbersome," defense analyst Nitin Mehta.

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