Australia signs $50b Attack submarine deal with French shipbuilder

The Australian Government today (Feb 11) ratified a Strategic Partnering Agreement with the French shipbuilding company Naval Group that will see 12 submarines designed and built in Australia for the Royal Australian Navy as part of the Future Submarine Program.

“The $50-billion Attack Class program will deliver submarines that will meet our Navy’s capability requirements, will be at the forefront of Australia’s defence strategy and will help protect Australia’s security and prosperity for decades to come,” Vice Admiral Noonan, Chief of  Royal Australian Navy, said.

“With their inherent stealth, long-range endurance, and formidable striking power, the Attack class are a key part of our Navy’s future,” he said. 

The Strategic Partnering Agreement was signed at Russell Offices in Canberra by the Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morrison, the Minister for Defence (Australia), Christopher Pyne, and the Minister for the Armed Forces of France, Madame Florence Parly.

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Some work on the future submarines has already taken place under a Design and Mobilisation Contract and this will continue uninterrupted under today’s Agreement. The formalisation of the Strategic Partnering Agreement represents the contractual basis for the program.

The full range of other activities required to deliver this major program, including the development of the submarine construction yard in Osborne South Australia, are continuing. 

The first ‘Attack’ class submarine, to be named HMAS Attack, is due to be delivered in the early 2030s.

The decision to partner with Naval Group (formerly DCNS) was made in 2016, following a competitive evaluation process commenced by the Australian Government.

The Attack class submarines are a major pillar of the Australian Government’s $90 billion National Shipbuilding Plan, which will see 54 naval vessels built in Australia, to meet the strategic requirements set out in our 2016 Defence White Paper.


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