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Damen signs with COTECMAR for Colombian frigate design phase

A computer render released by Damen of a notional SIGMA 10514 design matched to the Colombian Navy's PES requirement. The final configuration will be determined during the contractual design phase. (Damen)

Damen Shipyards Group has been selected to partner with Colombia's state-owned COTECMAR (Corporación de Ciencia y Tecnología para el Desarrollo de la Industria Naval Marítima y Fluvial) shipyard to design a new generation of multirole frigates for the Colombian Navy.

A contract for co-development of the contractual design for the new Plataforma Estratégica de Superficie (PES) was signed on 27 September onboard the frigate ARC Almirante Padilla at the Naval Base ARC Bolivar in Cartagena. No additional details of the contract terms were disclosed, but it was revealed that the PES design will be an adaptation of Damen's proven SIGMA 10514 baseline previously built in-country for Indonesia and Mexico.

The PES programme calls for the local construction of up to five frigates to replace the Colombian Navy's four ageing FS 1500 Almirante Padilla-class frigates, and its two former Republic of Korea Navy corvettes ARC Nariño (ex-ROKS Donghae ) and ARC Almirante Tono (ex-ROKS Pohang ). It is intended that the new ships will include anti-air, anti-surface, and anti-submarine capabilities, and also provide for the operation and support of an embarked helicopter.

Expected to last 18 months, the PES contractual design phase is planned to establish a design baseline that fulfils the requirements of the Colombian Navy within an agreed programme cost envelope. In a statement, Damen said that Colombia's ambition to further develop its maritime industry “fits perfectly in Damen's strategy to co-operate with local shipyards like COTECMAR”.

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