Not exactly related to the subject under discussion, but we dont have a dedicated RN thread and I figure this will do.
- The Royal Navy's Type 31e General Purpose Frigate programme is regarded as the catalyst to an enterprise-wide transformation
- The build of a class of up to three new Future Solid Support ships will be subject to international competition
A return to open competition, improved governance structures, and a greater focus on exportability are the principal aims of the UK government's new National Shipbuilding Strategy, published by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) on 6 September.
Steller Spartan's concept for the Type 31e GPFF, regarded as the catalyst to an enterprise-wide transformation. (Steller Spartan)
Announced to Parliament by UK Secretary of State for Defence Michael Fallon, the strategy – which overwhelmingly accepts recommendations made in businessman John Parker's 2016 independent National Shipbuilding Strategy report – will use the Royal Navy's (RN) Type 31e General Purpose Frigate programme (GPFF) as the catalyst for an enterprise-wide transformation. A fast-track acquisition programme is planned for an initial batch of five Type 31e frigates, at a maximum cost of GBP250 million (USD326.8 million) per vessel.
However, although warship construction for the RN will remain within the UK, the plan has ruled against mandating an onshore build of a class of up to three new Future Solid Support (FSS) ships. Instead, the acquisition of these vessels – categorised as 'non-warships' – will be subject to international competition.
Presented by the government as part of a wider industrial strategy to foster economic growth in the post-Brexit era, the National Shipbuilding Strategy outlines a plan to reverse the process of sector consolidation pursued since the 2005 Defence Industrial Strategy. This culminated in July 2009 in a 15-year terms-of-business agreement (ToBA) with BAE Systems, providing the company exclusivity on specified naval programmes and underwriting the maintenance of key industrial capabilities
Pity they cant see the value of sourcing in the UK for support ships. it might just be the catalyst that merchant shipbuilding needs.