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IOC for UK Royal Navy's first-in-class Type 26 frigate to be delayed by 12 months

The future HMS Glasgow under construction at BAE Systems' Govan yard in Scotland. (Richard Scott/NAVYPIX)

UK Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace has confirmed that initial operating capability (IOC) for the Royal Navy's first Type 26 City-class frigate has slipped by one year to October 2028. The ship is being built by BAE Systems at its Govan facility in Scotland.

In a written statement to Parliament on 2 November, Wallace said the delay was mainly due to the impacts of the Covid pandemic, as well as design and supply chain issues.

“Due to the impact of Covid 19, where the Govan yard was required to shut down for a number of weeks, and challenges typical of those experienced with the first-of-class ship, including finalising the ship design and timely delivery of key new to service equipment, the Department is forecasting a twelve-month delay to the Type 26 initial operating capability from October 2027 to October 2028,” he said in the statement.

The delay will add GBP223 million (USD252 million) to the overall cost of the programme, he said, adding that efforts were already under way to increase productivity at the yard and improve on the revised IOC date.

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