The government has eased the norms for award of contract for shipbuilding and ship repairs to local shipbuilders by doing away with the need for prior experience in building or repairing any specific type or size of vessel.
It has now been decided that specialisation shall not be a criterion for determining the eligibility of Indian shipyards provided the shipyards possess adequate capability.
Government had earlier issued guidelines for evaluating and awarding tenders for shipbuilding, dry-docking and ship repair works for government departments or agencies, including public sector undertakings.
In order to support Indian shipbuilding and ship-repair industry, the union cabinet had, on 9 December 2015, approved the criteria for evaluating and awarding tenders for shipbuilding and ship repair works floated by government departments or agencies, including PSUs.
It was directed that government departments or agencies including PSUs procuring any type of vessels for governmental purposes or for their own use or requiring ship repair shall henceforth, till 2025, grant ''Right of first refusal'' to Indian shipyards to enable them to match the lowest rate offered by the foreign bidder.
Further from 2025 onwards, only Indian-built vessels shall be procured by such departments and agencies for governmental purposes or for own purposes. Such departments and agencies have to undertake bulk tendering for their entire vessel related requirements with deliveries starting from 2017-2018.
This is in line with international practice where many countries, in order to provide dedicated order-book support to domestic shipyards, place their ship-acquisition, repair or chartering requirements on their shipyards, says a shipping ministry release.