On 8 December 2022, the Ministry of Defence signed an amendment to a contract with Eurosam, a consortium of companies managed by MBDA, for the production of Aster 30 Block 1 missiles.
The contract, which was signed by the OCCAR-EA Director on behalf of the UK MoD, will see the UK join a multi-national partnership with France and Italy for the production of the Aster missile system.
I previously reported an initial contract worth £300m had been signed with MBDA. The upgraded defence system, using the ASTER 30 Block 1 missile previously used only in French and Italian land systems, to help UK forces combat the increasing threats posed by anti-ship ballistic missiles at sea by developing the missile into a maritime variant.
The new contract amendment will oversee the conversion of Aster 30 missiles to the Aster 30 B1 Naval UK standard, as well as the development of autopilot software and logistics updates.
The munition assembly will take place at Defence Munition Gosport in the UK.
OCCAR say that the close collaboration between OCCAR, the UK MoD, and DE&S, as well as the efforts of DGA in France and SEGREDIFESA in Italy, played a key role in the signing of this contract after a lengthy and complex negotiation period.
“The close collaboration between OCCAR, the UK MoD and DE&S in particular, plus the great level of effort from DGA (FR) and SEGREDIFESA (IT), played a key role in the achievement of this major milestones after a lengthy and complex negotiation period with industry. Representatives from the Participating State could not join the ceremony in person but expressed their high satisfaction at the accomplishment of this long-awaited achievement.”
This programme, the organisation says, strengthens the strategic cooperation between France, Italy, and the UK in the ammunition domain and opens the door to future tri-national partnership opportunities.