The Ministry of Defence on Monday (1 July) issued four shipbuilding requests for proposal (RFPs) amounting to Rs 15,000 crore for the acquisition of warships and craft for the Navy and the Coast Guard.

"While the RFP for 6 Next Generation Missile Vessels (NGMVs) has been issued to seven shipyards, RFPs for 8 Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs), 12 Air Cushion Vehicles (ACVs) and 8 Missile-cum-Ammunition Barges have been issued to shortlisted Indian shipyards," the ministry said in a statement.

The RFP for ACVs, commonly known as hovercraft, also includes the initial requirement for six of these vessels of the Indian Army, reports ANI.

"In addition to the above, few more RFPs for more shipbuilding projects are likely to be issued in the next few months," the ministry said.

The ministry along with the Navy and the Coast Guard undertook an exercise to encourage participation by a large number of Indian shipyards and to make the qualification process of shipyards more objective.

This led to the rationalisation of guidelines for the capacity assessment of shipyards that have been promulgated recently. Rationalisation and promulgation of financial selection criteria have paved the way for issue of RFPs for a large number of shipbuilding projects that have been pending, it said.

"In a significant move to encourage smaller shipyards, participation in the projects with the anticipated annual outflow of less than Rs 75 crore has been restricted to smaller shipyards having an average annual turnover less than Rs 500 crore," the ministry said.