‘PSL is the First Indian Shipyard to Undertake Modular Construction with Efficient Shipbuilding Processes’
What are the unique selling points of Pipavav Shipyard Ltd?
Pipavav shipyard is a green field modern shipyard with state of the art shipbuilding infrastructure and world class ship building practices. It has several USPs. For instance, it is one of the largest and most modern shipyards in the world with one of the largest dry dock (662mx65m) in the world. We have two Goliath cranes each with the capacity of 600 tons and capable of handling 1,200 tons fully outfitted Giga blocks. What’s more, PSL is the first Indian shipyard to undertake modular construction with efficient shipbuilding processes in line with the Japanese and Korean shipyards. As a result, our rate of productivity is higher. The use of CNC machines and robotics has ensured quality production and short build periods. We have been able to build cost effective warships and submarines with technological support from reputed global partners. The shipyard has a proven track record of infrastructure development. With a very strong technical as well as management team and adoption of three dedicated ITIs for continuous inflow of trained manpower, PSL has a bright future. As we continue to grow our activities, we have a huge area for future development available with us. Lastly, I would say that PSL is a sound company with a very strong capital structure and very low debt equity.

Within the private shipyards in the country, how do you rate PSL and for what reasons?
As I said earlier, PSL is the largest shipyard in the country with latest infrastructure. Our capacity is more than the cumulative capacity of all Public and Private Shipyards in the country. Besides we are the only shipyard in India having modular construction capability.

What are PSL’s expansion plan and market strategy?
The present capacity of PSL is 144,000 tons of steel production per annum. We have kept provision for doubling this capacity in a short period based on market requirements. Our ship building facilities for both commercial and naval requirements and facilities for offshore works are already in operation. We are now expanding into ship repairs/refits and modernisations of naval ships and submarines. For this purpose we are going to start construction of our second dry dock which will be bigger that the first dry dock (662mX65m).

How has PSL been successful in bagging Indian Navy’s NOPV orders, and what does this mean for further defence orders? Which warship type you would like to bid in future?
Naval Offshore Patrol Vessels (a warship) is the first defence tender in which PSL took part. Our team came out with a very good design which was technically acceptable to the Indian Navy. The build strategy for the ships was planned on the modular construction concept and accordingly a very competitive winning bid was submitted to the navy. We are happy that we have been successful in our first bid. This paves the way for us to take part in the future naval programmes. As per media report, Indian Navy has very ambitious warship acquisition plans including frigates, destroyers. LPDs, aircraft carriers and submarines. In view of our large shipbuilding capacity, we shall be looking forward to take an active part in all these programmes.
Chairman, Pipavav Shipyard Ltd, Nikhil P. Gandhi  
Since building a warship would be different from a commercial vessel, what preparations or changes would you need to make PSL to meet MOD specifications?
PSL has most of the shipbuilding facilities required for warship construction. However, project specific augmentations, if any required would be done as per requirements.

Do you see PSL being a hybrid shipyard a decade from now, or do you see it specialising as defence shipyard?
I have no doubt in my mind that PSL’s focus will be to meet the defence requirements not only for the country but we would also be a major player for the export market.

Does the defence ministry need to do more to provide a level playing field to private shipyards as compared to PSUs? If yes, what need to be done?
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