The Times has reported here that HMS Monmouth and HMS Montrose, two Type 23 Frigates vessels, will be given to Greece as part of efforts to ‘sweeten the deal’ to sell the Greek Navy the Type 31 design.
“Two of Britain’s aged and retiring warships are to be offered to the Hellenic Navy to help Babcock International win a multibillion-pound deal with Greece to build new frigates and upgrade its fleet.”
In March it was announced that Montrose as well as sister ship Monmouth would be decommissioned earlier than planned as part of defence’s Integrated Review. As of 2021, Montrose remained deployed East of Suez but was scheduled to return to the UK in 2022, five years earlier than previously planned. As for HMS Monmouth, the long laid-up Type 23 Frigate has now left the fleet leaving the Royal Navy with 12 frigates.
What’s happening with Type 31?
Babcock are offering the Arrowhead 140 General Purpose Frigate, the design the Type 31 Frigate is based on, to the Hellenic Navy.
David Lockwood, Chief Executive Officer, of Babcock International has led a series of meetings in Greece with key industry figures, Government officials and supply chain companies as Babcock continues to build international interest in its Arrowhead 140 general purpose frigate and bid to deliver the Hellenic Navy’s new frigate modernisation programme.
According to an e-mail from the firm, a comprehensive programme of discussions were undertaken as Babcock reinforced the strengths of the offer made by the company and the UK Government to provide the Hellenic Navy with a Hydra Class upgrade programme, an interim frigate capability and four Babcock Arrowhead 140 frigates.
“The Arrowhead 140 has already been chosen by the UK Royal Navy for its Type 31 future frigate programme. The company is committed to supporting Greek industry to build and assemble the new frigates in Greece, reinvigorating the domestic supply chain, upgrading infrastructure, modernising domestic facilities, upskilling and growing local workforces and transferring knowledge and technology. Babcock officials have also been engaging with Greece-based companies interested in being part of its in-country supply chain and recently held a live online event in Athens, under the auspices of the Hellenic MoD Armaments Directorate.”
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