Four Shipyards Agree to Build New German Corvettes
(Source: Defense-Aerospace.com; posted April 9, 2018)
To keep as many of its naval shipyards as possible afloat, the German defense ministry will divide the construction of the new batch of K130-class corvettes among four shipyards belonging to three separate companies. (Reddit photo)
PARIS --- The five additional K130 corvettes for the German Navy will be built at four shipyards in Northern Germany, and specifically in Hamburg, Bremen, Kiel and Wolgast, the K130 Working Group, which includes naval shipbuilding groups Lürssen, ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems and German Naval Yards, announced on April 6. The contract, which was approved last year, is worth around two billion euros, German newspaper Die Welt reported Friday night.

The five corvettes are identical to those of the first batch, that ThyssenKrupp and Lürssen built for the German Navy in the past decade. The two companies were initially awarded the contract for the second batch without a public tender, which German Naval Yards successfully challenged, Die Welt said.

Lürssen will now build the forward sections of two ships in Bremen, while the other three will be built at Kiel-Gaarden by German Naval Yards. The Peene shipyard in Wolgast, which also belongs to Lürssen, will build the rear sections of all five ships. All five corvettes will be assembled, equipped and launched at Blohm + Voss, Hamburg's last major shipyard and also a subsidiary of Lürssen.

"Our goal, together with our partners in the consortium and the numerous on-site suppliers, is to successively hand over all five boats to the German Navy from 2022," Tim Wagner, Managing Director of the Defense division of Lürssen Werft, told Die Welt.

Tender for multipurpose combat ship is underway

Orders from the German Navy are now scarce and highly sought after by the specialized shipyards. A consortium of Lürssen and ThyssenKrupp is still building the four new frigates of the F125 type at Blohm + Voss in Hamburg until the beginning of 2020.

Currently, the bidding process for the next generation of frigates, the multi-purpose combat ship MKS180, is underway. Blohm + Voss is bidding for this order, which is expected to cost around 3.5 billion euros, together with Damen Shipyards from the Netherlands. Competitor German Naval Yards has formed a consortium with US defense contractor Alion.

However, Lürssen and ThyssenKrupp were excluded from the frigate competition by the BAAINBw, the German defense ministry’s procurement arm. While no official reason was provided, German officials have made no secret that the build quality of the F125-class frigates delivered by the two companies was unacceptably bad, and in fact led the German navy to refuse delivery of the Type 125 frigate “Baden-Wurttenberg.” The ship, according to German media reports, suffers from major hardware and software defects, is overweight and suffers a persistent list to starboard.

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