Jan. 30, 2013 - By WENDELL MINNICK - Defense News
TAIPEI — Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd. (ST Engineering) announced Jan. 30 that the Singapore Ministry of Defense (MINDEF) awarded the company a contract for the design and build of eight new vessels to replace the Fearless-class Patrol Vessels, indigenously designed and built by ST Engineering’s marine arm, ST Marine, in the 1990s.
The new vessels will be designed and built by ST Marine at its Benoi Yard. Singapore Technologies Electronics Ltd. (ST Electronics), ST’s electronics arm, will supply the core combat systems and combat system integration solutions.
ST Marine will carry out the platform system integration as the lead system integrator. Design of the vessels will commence immediately, and the delivery of these vessels is expected to be from 2016 onward.
“We are honored to be awarded this contract by MINDEF, which reflects the excellent partnership between MINDEF and ST Engineering. It also demonstrates our continuing efforts and commitment to develop indigenous capability to better support MINDEF in the area of design, construction, operations and support,” said Ng Sing Chan, president of ST Marine, in a prepared press release.
No details of what parameters will be used to design and build the vessels were released. There were no details about the bidding process. There was also no disclosure of costs.
The ST Engineering press release said, “we are under contractual obligation to observe confidentiality in respect of the contract, we are unable to disclose any further details.”
In April 2012, ST Marine announced it had won a contract to design and build four patrol vessels (PVs) under Oman’s Al Ofouq program. The $700 million deal also has a provision for associated logistics support for the Royal Navy of Oman. Oman awarded the contract to ST Marine through a competitive international tender that included Netherlands-based Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding and India-based Goa Shipyard.
ST Marine will build four 74-meter patrol vessels based on its “proprietary” 500-ton Fearless-class patrol vessel. ST Marine has previously denied suggestions that the Fearless-class vessels were based on the Visby design produced by Swedish ship and submarine builder Kockums.