The Defense Ministry is set to offer a AR $98 million – about US $ 4.9 million – reward for the provision of precise information that contributes to the location of the ARA San Juan Submarine, missing since last November 15.
The announcement comes two days after President Mauricio Macri met with the family members of the submarine’s crew at the Casa Rosada. Then, the relatives requested the government implements a series of measures regarding the search, as they consider its current state to be dire. One of them was the offer of a US $4 million reward.
The government’s announcement is aimed at getting private help in the search, taking into account that the assistance provided by the Russian government – in the form of Russian ship Yantar as well as Russian remotely operated vehicles checking the ocean floor – is likely to end at the end of February. In fact, the Navy has already indicated that it has been preparing for the eventual withdrawal.
Once the Yantar goes back to Russia, the government will need to find a way of replacing the service it provides, it the Navy doesn’t posses a similar ship. According to Clarín, different alternatives are being discussed: renting a robot able to conduct deep water searches; launching a tender to buy a similar ship; or reaching an agreement with private companies that do own one to get them to join the search, but condition the payment to the location of the submarine.
The search has yet to turn up any concrete results.