SHARE

During a two day visit to Oman, the Defence Secretary signed an agreement securing UK use of facilities at Duqm, ahead of the completion of the UK Joint Logistics Support Base at the port, giving Britain a strategically important and permanent maritime base east of Suez for the new carriers.

The Duqm Port complex provides significant opportunity to the defence, security and prosperity agendas for both the UK and Oman.

It has dry dock capability able to accommodate submarines and Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers.

According to a press release:

“From Duqm, HMS Queen Elizabeth will be able to project influence across an important region. She will fulfil multiple roles from providing air power anywhere at any time, to supporting allies or delivering humanitarian aid and the port itself provides Britain with a hub from which to tackle issues such as the fight against Daesh.”

Defence Secretary, Sir Michael Fallon, said:

“This agreement ensures British engineering expertise will be involved in developing Duqm as a strategic port for the Middle East, benefiting the Royal Navy and others.

Oman is a longstanding British ally and we work closely across diplomatic, economic and security matters. Our commitment to the Duqm port project highlights the strength of our relationship.”

The release concludes:

“Through ensuring a permanent UK presence at Duqm, the UK will be able to shape the development of the Naval facility to support its carrier capability and wider British security needs in the region.

Alongside at Duqm was HMS Monmouth, who has recently completed a five month deployment to the Gulf where as part of an international coalition she was involved in drugs busts worth £400m. The Defence Secretary praised the work of the sailors whose actions removed a key funding stream for terrorists in the region.”

Once completed, the UK Joint Logistics Support Base, a multi-million pound joint venture between British defence company Babcock International and the Oman Drydock Company, will provide the UK a permanent training facility in addition to a key military logistics centre in the Gulf. It will also be connected to other Gulf countries by the Gulf Rail Project.

12 COMMENTS

  1. You cannot get a more pro UK country than Oman, if it couldn’t be docked there then it couldn’t be docked anywhere.

    Oman has excellent security and intelligence services.

  2. “(It) will provide the UK a permanent training facility in addition to a key military logistics centre in the Gulf.”

    If that means the Gulf of Oman, in the Indian Ocean then yes it will.
    However if they mean The Gulf that most people understand it to be ( Persian or Arabian depending on what shoreline you are standing on) then no it wont.

    For those that have managed to avoid Duqm you are not missing much. It is 5 hours by road from Muscat. It is actually a good ten miles past the middle of nowhere. The airport is the only sensible way in and out of the place.

    Its a new dockyard which has advantages and disadvantages.
    PROS: New infrastructure and land to expand in to.
    CONS: The workforce has little experience of working with civilian let alone military vessels.
    Its right next to YEMEN . The place where the rebels came within a gnats hair of blowing up a Saudi Navy Ship earlier this year.

    So here is one to think on…if the carrier is up in the NAG flying sorties into say Iraq and has an engineering issue or takes damage, is it then going to limp down the Gulf, through the Straights of Hormuz , go around the corner head down the coast to get to a Dockyard?
    Or will it put in to HMS JUFAIR and use the dock facilities in Bahrain or go further down to Dubai?

    Give it 10-15 years and it may be a worth while move for the UK.

  3. Oman is a pleasant country, been there a few times.

    Peaceful, conservative but not oppressively so, beautiful and far more balanced than its various neighbours.

  4. Maybe if we had not just quietly scrapped without replacement, RFA Diligence, our forward repair and engineering ship we would not need multi billion pound far flung bases all around the world. Diligence could probably patch up most minor or moderate damage a ship receives to allow it to sail back to Blightey or a more safe/ secure location for definitive repair.
    A base near to Yemen does not sound a great idea at this time. Long term might work out???

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here