HMS Ocean will soon embark on her final deployment before the helicopter carrier is taken out of service.
The helicopter carrier will assume the role of Flagship for the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 during the deployment. She will sail this afternoon.
Captain Robert Pedre said:
“My ship’s company and I very much look forward to assuming the role of a NATO Flagship. HMS Ocean is an incredibly capable amphibious and command platform and represents a significant UK contribution to NATO’s efforts to maintain security in the Mediterranean region.”
The vessel will decommission on at the end of March next year.
We reported recently that the Brazilian Navy has sent a proposal to pay for helicopter carrier HMS Ocean in instalments.
According to Brazilian journalist Roberto Lopes in an e-mail to us, the ship’s cost to the Brazilian Navy is fixed at £80.3 million pounds (312 million of Brazilian Reais).
Commander of the Brazilian Navy, Admiral Eduardo Leal Ferreira, claimed that the price of Ocean seemed “convenient”.
HMS Ocean is the UK’s only helicopter carrier and the fleet flagship of the Royal Navy. She is designed to support amphibious landing operations and to support the staff of Commander UK Amphibious Force and Commander UK Landing Force.
According to someone we spoke to currently on-board the vessel, there are rumours that this is one of a number of possibilities:
“People have been talking about what will happen to the ship after 2018, there were rumours that the vessel might be sold to another navy but there’s been no mention of what navy that might be.”
The helicopter carrier was constructed in the mid-1990s and commissioned in September 1998.
In November 2015, the MoD confirmed that HMS Ocean is to be decommissioned in 2018 with no like-for-like replacement.
This comes as the Brazilian Navy have decided to abandon the refit of the aircraft carrier Sao Paulo and decommission the vessel after a series of technical issues and accidents.
Rectification costs are understood to be a major factor in this decision.