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UK, Denmark agree to collaborate on Type 31 frigate introduction to service

The Type 31s – replacing five general duty Type 23 frigates – are based on the Royal Danish Navy's proven Iver Huitfeldt class. (Royal Navy)

The British and Danish navies have signed a co-operative agreement to work together to bring the UK Royal Navy's (RN) Type 31 Inspiration-class frigates into service.

The RN has ordered five Type 31 frigates under a GBP1.25 billion (USD1.58 billion) contract awarded to UK shipbuilder Babcock in November 2019. The Type 31 is based on the Arrowhead 140 design, which is an evolution of the Iver Huitfeldt-class platform already in service with the Royal Danish Navy (RDN).

The RDN has more than a decade of experience operating its three Iver Huitfeldt-class frigates, which were built by Danish shipyard Odense Steel Shipyard and delivered between 2012–14. Under the Type 31 implementing Agreement, which was signed by the two countries' navies at the recent Chiefs of European Navies Seminar in Romania, the RDN will make the lessons learned from the ship class available to the RN.

Specifically, the agreement aims to: assist the two nations' shipbuilding industries to deliver value for money capability on time to protect against evolving threats; support the introduction of the Type 31s into service; jointly develop doctrine and seize opportunities to test that doctrine in joint training, exercises, and operations; develop and transform support policy for both classes of ship; develop collaborative operational tasking involving Type 31s and Iver Huitfeldt-class frigates; and contribute to the long-term future of the Danish and UK defence industries.

The agreement also seeks to strengthen the strategic relationship between the two navies and their ability to work together.

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