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Australia gifts Guardian Class Nafanua III to Samoan government

Nafanua III is the 18th Guardian-class Patrol Boat to be delivered by Austal to the Australian Department of Defence under the Pacific Patrol Boat Replacement Project SEA3036-1. Photo: Austal.

The Australian federal government has officially handed over the Guardian Class patrol boat Nafanua III to Samoa in a formal ceremony this week.

The Australian federal government has officially handed over the Guardian Class patrol boat Nafanua III to Samoa in a formal ceremony this week.

Samoan Minister of Police and Prisons Faualo Harry Jeffrey Schuster and the Commissioner of Police, Auapaau Logoitino Filipo, received Nafanua III on behalf of the government of Samoa from federal member for Hasluck Tania Lawrence, who is representing Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Richard Marles.

Nafanua III is the 18th vessel delivered under the Australian government’s Pacific Maritime Security Program. The 30-year commitment by the Australian government to ensure uninterrupted engagement with Pacific partners aims to support of a stable, prosperous, and secure region by enhancing capability of Pacific partners to attain their security goals.


The newest Guardian Class will continue Samoa’s work in protecting its maritime sovereignty, enhancing its surveillance capability, supporting faster humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts when required.

“Defence shares a deep and enduring partnership with the Samoa Police Service, and it is fantastic to see Samoa receive Nafanua III, which will play a critical role in supporting regional maritime security efforts,” according to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Richard Marles.

“Austal’s continued commitment to building world-class capability right here in Australia will mean safer waters and stronger responses to shared maritime challenges for our Pacific partners.”

Nafanua III was initially accepted from shipbuilder Austal by representatives from the Department of Defence before being gifted by the Australian government at HMAS Stirling in Western Australia on 22 November 2023.

Austal Limited chief executive officer Paddy Gregg said Nafanua III is the third Guardian Class patrol boat delivered by Austal in 2023, and one of five vessels in total delivered by the company’s Western Australian shipyards this calendar year.

“The Austal team has yet again shown how capable, productive, and efficient they are with the delivery of this latest Guardian Class patrol boat. Nafanua III is the third Guardian we’ve delivered in 2023, in addition to two 58-metre Evolved Cape Class patrol boats to the Royal Australian Navy,” he said.

“Austal’s Western Australian shipyards, our skilled local workforce, and our valued supply chain partners continue to demonstrate a sovereign capability to design, build, and sustain naval vessels for Australia and export markets.”

The 39.5-metre steel monohull patrol boat, designed, constructed, and sustained by Austal Australia, is based on the 38-metre Bay Class, 56-metre Armidale Class, and 58-metre Cape Class patrol boats that are in service with the Australian Border Force and Royal Australian Navy.

The Guardian Class patrol boat, which includes an integrated RHIB stern launch and recovery system, provides Pacific partners with an improved naval asset to carry out border patrols, regional policing, search and rescue, and other operations domestically and internationally.

Since November 2018, Austal Australia has delivered a total of 29 ships; (including) 18 Guardians, six Evolved Capes, two Capes, and three large high-speed ferries.

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