On September 19, 2019, the Finnish government approved the procurement of four new multipurpose corvettes valued at more than EUR 1 billion.
As Naval Today earlier reported, the ship quartet will be designed and constructed at Finnish Rauma Marine Constructions (RMC) shipyard.
The design phase for the four Squadron 2020 vessel will resume with immediate effect and construction of the first vessel will start at the shipyard in 2022, Rauma informed.
The combat system, including weapons and sensors, will be provided by Saab, accompanied by necessary design and installation services by RMC. In a separate statement, the Finnish Ministry of Defence said that Aker Arctic Technology Oy will provide ship-class propellers and propeller shafts.
The agreements on the construction of vessels, the supply and integration of the combat system and the supply of propellers and propeller shafts will be signed in Turku on 26 September 2019, according to the defense ministry.
A total of EUR 1,232 million was allocated to the Squadron 2020 project in the 2018 budget. The share of the construction contract to be concluded with RMC is EUR 647.6 million and the share of the propeller shaft contract with Aker is EUR 27 million. Price of the Saab combat system is EUR 412 million.
The total cost of the Squadron 2020 project is EUR 1,325.48 million, which includes the EUR 22 million risk reserve for joint acquisitions and the EUR 83 million for the ITO20 anti-aircraft missile system already purchased for the ship class.
The Squadron 2020 project will replace a large number of the Finnish Navy’s existent fleet, consisting of seven vessels. The multipurpose Pohjanmaa-class corvettes will be delivered by 2026 and will be taken into operational use by the Finnish Navy in 2028.
“Through this agreement, Finland will once again have a domestically built fleet, which supports our country’s security of supply,” Jyrki Heinimaa, CEO of RMC, commented.
Furthermore, according to Heinimaa, the project is also vital in strengthening the Finnish maritime industry and research conducted within the industry.
“Projects such as Squadron 2020 enable new innovations and technology solutions to be utilised in a broader spectrum within Finnish shipbuilding,” adds Heinimaa.
During the process of constructing the vessels, the shipyard will also develop the readiness to provide life-cycle services for the vessels following their delivery to the navy.