A contract valued at about GBP100 million has been signed between the Government o the Federative Republic of Brazil and Vosper Thornycroft Limited (a subsidiary of the David Brown Corporation Limited) of portsmouth, England , for the design and building of six Vosper Thornycroft Mark 10 frigates.
A contract valued at about GBP100 million has been signed between the Government o the Federative Republic of Brazil and Vosper Thornycroft Limited (a subsidiary of the David Brown Corporation Limited) of portsmouth, England , for the design and building of six Vosper Thornycroft Mark 10 frigates. This is believed to be the biggest shipbuilding contract ever placed by the Brazilian Government either at home or abroad, and the biggest single export shipbuilding contract - perhaps even the biggest single export contract of any sort -ever received by one British company.
Four of the ships will be built at Vosper Thornycroft's woolston, Southampton, shipyard, and two by the Naval Dockyard in Brazil, with materials. equipment and lead-yard services supplied by Vosper Thornycroft. Finance will be provided under an agreement being negotiated between S.G. Warburg & Co. Ltd., on behalf of a syndicate of British banks, and the Brazilian Government. The credit will be guaranteed by the Export Credits Guarantee Department.
Vosper Thornycroft Mark 10 frigates will have a length of 424 feet and a displacement of over 3000 tons, comparable in size with the British Royal Navy's Type 42. They will be powered by a combination of gas turbine and diesel machinery. Of the four ships to be built at Woolston, two be anti-submarine frigates, and the other two will be general purpose both be anti-submarine frigates.
Included in the contract is the provision by Vosper Thornycroft of complete support services, comprising the supply and cataloguing of base and on- board spare parts, maintenance instructions, and planned maintenance routines, training, etc., generally as for the Royal Navy but modified to suit Brazilian naval requirements.
It is expected that design work will be completed in time for construction of the first British - built ship to be started at Woolston early in 1972. The building time for each ship will be approximately four years, ships being laid down at yearly intervals so that the last vessel should be completed in 1979.
Commenting on the order, Mr. John Rix, Chairman and Managing Director of Vosper Thornycroft Limited, said, "It really is a great honour that the Brazilian Government has entrusted us with this extremely valuable contract. I think it is fair to say that our success in this case has scummed from the Vosper Thornycroft policy of building up a complete and self-contained warship design team. It was the existence of this team which enabled us to respond quickly with detailed design proposals when we received the initial inquiry from the Brazilian authorities and this was, I am sure, an important factor influencing the decision in or favour.
Apart from the two ships being built in Brazil, this new order brings the total number of frigates we are building, or have on order, at Woolston, to ten, all to our own designs, and of four different types.
We are also, of course, building a number of corvettes, patrol craft and hovercraft our Portsmouth shipyards for various Navies and marine services, including a recent order from Trinidad.
"Although there will not be any very considerable additions to our work force in the immediate future, it is very satisfactory to be able to look forward to a high overall level of employment in the company during the next few years."