French Naval Group awarded billion-dollar Dutch submarine deal

The Netherlands announced Friday it has chosen France's Naval Group for a contract to build four attack submarines for its navy. worth billions of euros. The deal is controversial in the Netherlands as local politicians wanted a Dutch manufacturer.

"With the choice of Naval Group, two naval yards didn't win and I understand that the disappointment is large," state secretary for defence Christophe van der Maat said after Naval Group was chosen over Germany's Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) and Sweden's Saab AB, which works in tandem with the Dutch Damen Shipyards.

The Dutch chief of Defence, General Onno Eichelsheim, confirmed on social media that the four new submarines would be built by Naval Group.

"The ships offer increased striking power and improved operational capacity, and will be deployable for different types of missions globally," he posted.

'Large capacity'

According to a factsheet from the Dutch Ministry of Defence, the new submarines will have a "large capacity thanks to modern battery technology".

The torpedoes and cruise missiles have a longer range than those of the older ships, conditions for special forces operations are improved while there's a "reduced chance at detection" of the ship, the document says.

According to the Ministry of Defence, two ships will be delivered within ten years "after the contract has been negotiated".

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