A multibillion-dollar contract has been awarded to the British consortium for the development of three Royal Navy support ships.
To continue reading the rest of this article, please log in.
Create free account to get unlimited news articles and more!
The UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) has selected Team Resolute — made up of Navantia UK, BMT and Harland and Wolff — as the preferred tenderer for a £1.6 billion (AU$2.8 billion) project aimed at developing three support ships for the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA).
The contract involves the manufacture of vessels designed to provide munitions, stores and provisions to the Royal Navy’s aircraft carriers, destroyers and frigates deployed at sea.
Team Resolute has pledged to invest £77 million (AU$137 million) in shipyard infrastructure to support the British shipbuilding sector — expected to support approximately 1,200 new jobs.
The final assembly is expected to be completed at Harland & Wolff’s shipyard in Belfast, with the three 216-metre-long vessels to be built to Bath-based BMT’s entirely British design.
The majority of the blocks and modules for the ships would be constructed at Harland & Wolff’s facilities in Belfast and Appledore, with components to be manufactured in other delivery centres in Methil and Arnish.
Navantia has been tasked with collaborating with the British firms, with build work also to take place at the company’s shipyard in Cadiz, Spain.
“This news will be a significant boost to the UK shipbuilding industry. By selecting Team Resolute, the Ministry of Defence has chosen a proposal which includes £77 million of investment into the UK shipyards, creating around 2,000 UK jobs, and showcasing cutting-edge British design,” Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said.
“Building on ambitions laid out in the National Shipbuilding Strategy, this contract will bolster technology transfer and key skills from a world-renowned shipbuilder, crucial in the modernisation of British shipyards.”
The project is also tipped to create 200 further education opportunities on graduate placements and apprentice programs, as well as supporting thousands more supply chain jobs.
Speaking on behalf of Team Resolute, Group CEO of Harland & Wolff, John Wood, welcomed the opportunity to develop critical capability for the Royal Navy.
“Team Resolute is proud to have been selected as preferred bidder to provide the Royal Fleet Auxiliary with three state-of-the-art, adaptable ships which will fulfil the Royal Navy’s needs while strengthening UK sovereign design and shipbuilding capability, as well as generating around £1.4 billion in national social and economic value,” he said.
“Team Resolute will be making a significant investment into the UK and help to level up UK government defence spend across the whole union.
“We will create high quality UK jobs, apprenticeships and four facilities across the UK which will have shipbuilding capabilities fit for the 21st century.”
Once completed, the ships are expected to be the second longest UK military vessels behind the two Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers.
The vessels will also be designed to be interoperable with the RFA’s Tide Class fleet tankers.