Saudi Arabia to Buy 5 Spanish Corvettes In €2 Billion Deal

The Avante 2200 corvette selected by Saudi Arabia is derived from the offshore patrol vessels that Navantia built for Venezuela.

Saudi Arabia has decided to order five Spanish corvettes, marking a major victory for Spain’s Navantia shipyards.

The contract is worth over €2 billion and is expected to be signed during Spanish King Philip VI’s first official visit to Saudi Arabia, which begins Nov. 12. It also includes the construction of a new naval base at a location to be decided, according to Spanish press reports.

Most details of the contract, and of the related inter-government agreement are still unknown, but Saudi authorities apparently want Spain to provide a political impetus to bilateral relations before signing. This explains why the contract was delayed for several months while Spain resolved its government crisis, which was keeping the King at home.

The corvettes will be built to the Avante 2200 design, a variant of the Patrulleros Oceánicos de Vigilancia offshore patrol vessels that Navantia built for Venezuela. These ships are 98.5 meters long, displace 2,450 tonnes and have a crew of 72 officers and ratings; their range is of 3,500 nautical miles at 18 knots.

Main characteristics of the Avante 2200C. Source: Navatia..

The vessels will be built at Navantia’s shipyards in San Fernando and Ferrol, in Southern Spain, and represent about 8 million man-hours, Andalucian government delegate Antonio Sanz said during a Nov 7 press conference. Construction will take about five years, and will provide over 2,000 direct jobs.

The Saudi Navy is predominantly equipped with French-made frigates, including Sawari (Al Riyadh-class) and Sawari II (Al-Madinah-class) built by DCNS. The Spanish corvettes will replace the US-built Badr-class corvettes based in the Persian Gulf.


Sources: Defence Aerospace

Written by Patricia Ruiz

Patricia Ruiz is Environmental and Forestry Engineer and a Supply Chain Management Expert

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