UK’s Ministry of Defence is considering granting over £1 billion to Rolls-Royce and BAE Systems so they can start building the first of four Successor ballistic missile submarines.
According to a report by The Financial Times, the Ministry might allocate approx. $1.3 billion of funds as early as September this year.
Successor is the British program to replace the four Vanguard submarines which have provided continuous at sea deterrence since 1992 with four new submarines that will be built in the UK.
Based on current plans, the submarines are expected to be fielded from the 2030s onwards and have a lifespan of at least 30 years.
The Successor submarines will carry the Trident missile system which will not need replacing until the 2040s.
“So far £4bn has been spent. Industry sources said the new round of funding would be used for continued design work and to order components that take a while to manufacture,” the paper wrote.
The decision to renew the Trident was made by the British House of Commons on July 18, 2016.
Whether to renew or scrap the program entirely gained a lot of publicity in the wake of the “Brexit”, Scottish opposition to the programme and claims that it would soon become obsolete.
The submarines are being developed together with the U.S. Navy’s Ohio Replacement Program. They are set to be assembled by BAE Systems at the company’s Barrow-in-Furness shipyard.