, France, — Rand Corp., a think tank, is due to conclude a short list of competitors this month for Australia’s tender for nine frigates to replace the Anzac warship, Hervé Boy, DCNS business development manager, said March 16.
An announcement of a “short list of two or three” candidates is due later this month in Australia’s Sea 5000 Future Frigate Program, he told journalists as DCNS formally handed over the Languedoc, a Frégate MultiMission or multimission frigate, to the Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en matière d’Armement (OCCAR), the international program manager.
The Languedoc handover took place as the stealthy frigate took to sea for a brief cruise in heavy rain and strong wind off the coast of southern France, with Navy Seals sailing close by in an Ecume rigid inflatable commando boat and an NH90 naval helicopter flying over.
OCCAR delivered the frigate to Direction Générale de l’Armement, the French procurement office, which in turn will hand the warship over to the French Navy.
Canada is also among the export prospects for DCNS, as Ottawa seeks to acquire 15 frigates, of which 12 would be multipurpose and three air defense versions, he said.
The Australian frigate program, estimated to be worth AUS $20 billion (US $15.2 billion), would replace eight Anzac frigates. DCNS is pitching an extended-range version of its frigate, which could be 6,000 to 7,000 tons, and could be 5 to 6 meters longer than the 6,000-ton standard version built for the French Navy and sold to Egypt and Morocco.
The French Navy FREMM Normandie (D651) Multi-Mission Stealth Frigate Sea Trial.