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Monday, January 11, 2016

Anil Ambani announces Rs 5,000-cr naval facility investment

Expanding his defence sector play, Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani has announced setting up of a new naval shipbuilding facility with an initial investment of Rs 5,000 crore, said the media report.

The facility, to be set up at Rambilli along the East Coast near Vizag, would also lead to creation of a multi-tier array of defence ancillaries with further investments of Rs 5,000-10,000 crore and thousands of skilled jobs, he said.

Speaking at the Andhra Partnership Summit after his group signed an MoU with Andhra Pradesh government for the facility, Ambani said it would complement Reliance Group's existing facility at Pipavav in Gujarat and will have a clear focus on building strategic assets for the Indian Navy.

"It is estimated that Indian Navy will spend over Rs 3 lakh crore or nearly Rs 20,000 crore a year on acquisitions and fleet modernisation of submarines and aircraft carriers over next 15 years, creating a huge pipeline of opportunity for the proposed world-class naval facility," he added.

"At an initial investment outlay of Rs 5,000 crore, it will represent the single-largest investment at one location anywhere in Andhra Pradesh," Ambani said.

The diversified group's chairman further said Reliance Group has had a strong business engagement with Andhra Pradesh and it has already invested Rs 15,000 crore and created thousands of jobs in the state across a range of sectors from telecom to power.

Stating that Vizag has for long time been a hub for commercial and maritime activities, Ambani said it has now grown to be one of the busiest harbour cities in Asia and it was ideally suited for the manufacture of strategic assets such as nuclear sub-marines and aircraft carriers.

The billionaire industrialist said one of the most important part of India's policy of a "credible minimum deterrence" is SSBN or a nuclear submarine and the proposed Vizag facility "will play in critical role in complementing this mission and bringing it to fruition".

Besides, it will also further Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Make in India mission in the defence sector, he said.