Norway Unveils New Defence Plan, Commits to Frigate Program

Norway Unveils New Defence Plan, Commits To Frigate Program - Merchant Navy Info - News

Norway embarks on new frigate program. Today, the Norwegian government announced its new long-term defence plan from 2025 to 2036. Under the name The Norwegian Defence Pledge, the plan envisions significant growth. It will see the country reach NATO’s target of 2 % of GDP for defence this year . In addition pass 3 % towards the end of the period.

Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre, in a press conference unveiling Norway’s new long-term frigate program. He emphasized the country’s commitment to its defence strategy. He stated, “The insurance premium is rising”. This commitment is reflected in the significant growth of all aspects of the Norwegian Defence Force. Also, with the Navy receiving the largest share of funding. Notably, the Navy’s largest single project will acquire a new frigate class. This a testament to Norway’s dedication to its defence strategy.

Norway new frigate program

The acquisition and operation of the frigates will be a collaborative effort, reflecting Norway’s strategic approach to defence. The frigates will be acquired and operated with a “close” ally with interests in the Norwegian home region. Moreover, it will be similar to the partnership between Norway and Germany in acquiring the U212CD-class. A firm order for five vessels is to be placed, with an option for a sixth. The decision not to acquire a tailored design is also key in meeting the tight schedule. Also, the first vessel is expected by 2029. A focus is placed on the ASW role. Potential partners in this endeavour include the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, France, the US/Italy, and Spain.

ASW helicopters are also to be acquired for the frigates. Notably, the order for the Seahawks to replace the retired NH90. This has only covered the shortfall in helicopters for the Coast Guard. While the MH-60R Seahawk is likely the favourite. However, there is no official indication in the official documents or press conference that this would be the case.

The future plans for the Royal Norwegian Navy are comprehensive and strategic. The fleet plan, which can be viewed in detail, includes the acquisition of frigates and ASW-helicopters. Also, as well as the replacement of the Ula-class submarines. This forward-looking plan demonstrates Norway’s commitment to maintaining a strong and modern navy.

Defence program going smooth

The U212CD program is going according to plan. In addition to the four submarines currently on order for the Norwegian Navy, a fifth and an option for a sixth boat will be ordered. This would ensure a one-for-one replacement of the six Ula-class submarines in service.

A major standardization program is envisioned for the Coast Guard – a branch of the Navy – and non-surface warfare vessels of the Navy. The current seven classes of patrol vessels, corvettes, mine-countermeasure vessels, and auxiliaries will be replaced by two different standardized designs – a medium-sized platform for coastal waters and a large one for offshore work – with modular weapons and sensor fit. A total of 18 medium and ten large vessels are to be acquired.

The Air Force will receive long-range maritime surveillance drones, particularly for use over the large sea regions in the high north, where they will complement the Norwegian P-8 Poseidon fleet. Here, Norway also envisions being part of an international user group with a relatively limited number of platforms. The Poseidons will receive a simulator to enhance training opportunities while decreasing operating costs.

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