French shipbuilding, systems and services group DCNS is to supply a FREMM multi-mission frigate to Egypt under a contract signed on 16 February. The vessel, originally built as Normandie, is to be taken up from the French Navy production line to expedite early delivery. Handover to the Egyptian Navy is scheduled for the middle of this year, following the completion of final outfitting.
Displacing 6,000 tonnes, the FREMM frigate is equipped with an OTO Melara 76/62 Super Rapid gun, Aster 15 point defence missiles and MM40 Block 3 Exocet surface-to-surface missiles (both manufactured by MBDA), plus Nexter Narwhal 20mm remote guns and Eurotorp MU90 Impact lightweight torpedoes. Sensors include the Thales Herakles E/F-band multifunction radar and the same company’s ARTEMIS staring array infrared search and track system. A hangar and flight deck aft provide for the operation of a 10-tonne class helicopter.
Normandie was originally intended to be the second FREMM delivered to the French Navy. To ensure that the operational capability of the French Navy will not be affected, DCNS will now accelerate the production of subsequent FREMM ships at its Lorient yard in Brittany.
According to DCNS, this sales agreement strengthens the company’s relationship with Egypt.
Last July, the company signed a separate contract with Egypt for the supply of four Gowind 2500 corvettes, three of which are to be assembled in-country under a transfer of technology arrangement.