SOURCE: SATYAJEET KUMAR/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
The present Japanese government is planning to allow the export of lethal weapons to 12 countries to counter the growing footprints of the Chinese military in the subcontinent. India, Australia, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, U.S., U.K., Germany, France, and Italy are among a select few countries that under new defense export control regulations will be allowed to purchase Japanese-made weapons systems from 2023 onwards.
A few years back, the Indian Ministry of Defence had requested their counterparts in Japan to offer their S?ry? class of attack submarines developed for the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force to the Indian Navy under the Project-75I program where it plans to acquire six new conventional diesel-electric submarines for its fleet.
Taigei-class of submarines is an improved variant of the S?ry? class that is packed with a much higher unit of Lithium-ion batteries that will enable the submarine to shut down its diesel-electric propulsion system and run entirely on battery power for extended periods underwater, considerably increasing underwater endurance.
Taigei-class will also be more advanced as they are equipped with newer equipment such as sonar systems, and snorkel power generation systems with lowered acoustic signature.
Back home in India, the Project-75I program has hit Rough seas, baring South Korean offer of the KSS-III (Jangbogo-III) class next-generation diesel-electric attack submarine, every other vendor has left the program citing either, due to lack of proven AIP and Lithium-ion battery system in their submarine or due to strict ToT clauses.
Taigei-class if offered might be a welcome offer for India since it will avoid a single vendor situation and prevent cancellation of the tender that could have caused retendering in effect leading to massive delays in the program. Taigei-class has all the technology that if absorbed is enough to kick start India’s very own conventional diesel-electric submarine program.
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