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In the last meeting before the summer break and thus probably also the last meeting before the federal elections in autumn, the budget committee of the Bundestag released funds for 27 armaments projects worth almost 20 billion euros. Now the Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Use in the Bundeswehr (BAAINBw) can conclude contracts with industry for the development, delivery and maintenance of systems and devices. A contract for fleet service boats has already been signed for the Navy.

The most prominent of the approved projects is the new New Generation Weapon System (NGWS) as part of the Future Combat Air Systems (FCAS). The NGWS, which consists of a fighter aircraft and drones, is intended to replace the Eurofighter.

In the maritime sector, eight billion euros have been approved for the procurement of sea-going units and maritime patrols. However, this does not lead to a significant increase in the number of "flagpoles". Only the two U212CD class submarines add to the fleet's fleet. The number of maritime patrols is decreasing. Ten of the twelve armaments projects approved by the Navy serve to replace older units and make necessary adjustments to the state of the art. If one calculates the measures that are necessary to keep existing units operational and expenses for missiles, the total investment increases to 9.4 billion euros.

Almost half of the investments approved by the Budget Committee on June 23 will go to the Navy. 6.227 billion euros flow into naval shipbuilding. If you purchase the Norwegian submarines 212 CD, it is as much as 10.637 billion.

Which maritime armaments projects has the Bundestag approved?

  • Two Class 212 Common Design Submarines (U212 CD) from the joint program with Norway. Norway procures four boats, Germany two. In the federal budget for 2021, two billion euros are earmarked for the two boats of the German Navy. The budgetary spokesman for the CDU / CSU parliamentary group, Eckhardt Rehberg MdB, stated in a press release on June 23rd, 2.8 billion euros. In an answer to a question in the German Bundestag, Parliamentary State Secretary Thomas Silberhorn put the financial requirements for two boats at 1.274 billion euros on June 14, 2021. Development costs are not included in the unit costs for the boats. Germany and Norway share it in a ratio of 1: 1. According to information available to ESuT.de, the financial requirement for measures accompanying the project (such as provisions, Li-Ion batteries, integration of IDAS, management reserve) is a further 308 million euros. This results in a total requirement of 3.19 billion euros. According to Norwegian press reports, the Oslo procurement authority is earmarking 4.41 billion euros for the purchase of the four boats (45 billion Norwegian kroner).
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
Draft for the submarine project U212CD (Graphic: thyssenkrupp Marine Systems)
  • Three Fleet service boats of class 424 (FDB424). According to information available to ESuT.de, 2.028 billion euros are planned for the replacement of the aging fleet service boats of class 423. A training and reference system for education belongs to this package. The Bremen-based Fr. Lürssen-Werft was commissioned to operate the construction of the three fleet service boats as general contractor. The units for electronic reconnaissance and information gathering are expected to be available to the German Navy from 2027. Tim Wagner, managing director of Fr. Lürssen Werft GmbH & Co. KG, announced that his company would start talks with potential partners from the shipyard industry and system technology: “With a cross-shipyard cooperation, we want the know-how and skills at shipyard locations of Merge the Lürssen Group with the capacities of other North German shipyards in order to get the urgently needed new fleet service boats on their way by integrating all the necessary resources.
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
A design sketch by the Lürssen shipyard for the new fleet service boats, Photo: Lürssen
  • Two Class 707 marine fuel supplier
    Den Finanzbedarf für die Versorger gibt die CDU/CSU-Fraktion im Deutschen Bundestag mit 914 Millionen Euro an. Der CDU-Bundestagsabgeordnete Eckhart Rehberg erwartet, dass der Bau der beiden Marinebetriebsstoffversorger bei der Rostocker Neptun-Werft 2022 beginnt. Mit der Fertigstellung sei 2025 zu rechnen.
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
Exemplary ship design of the new marine fuel transporter (Photo: MTG Marinetechnik GmbH)
  • Two test boats - "Sea trial coast"
    Here again the CDU / CSU parliamentary group in the German Bundestag specifies the financial requirement at 95 million euros. It concerns the procurement of a replacement for a multi-purpose and a test boat of the Defense Technology Service 71. In the corridors of the Bundestag one can hear that the Fassmer shipyard in Bremen is an applicant.
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
The P-8A Poseidon is a modern maritime patrol aircraft. Photo: US Navy
  • Procurement of five aircraft of the type P-8A Poseidon
    On June 30th, Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and her American counterpart Lloyd Austin signed the contract worth 1.1 billion euros in Washington. According to the information available to ESuT, the system price adds up to 1.78 billion euros (including support services). The related press release from the Federal Ministry of Defense states that the contract includes the five aircraft, the associated mission and communication equipment, an initial requirement for spare parts and accessories, ground testing equipment and special tools, a mission support system and technical and logistical support. The P-8A Poseidon is considered an interim solution. In the long term, together with France Maritime Airborne Weapons System (MAWS) to be developed. The US government approved the purchase of five of these fully equipped aircraft in March (ESUT reported). At that time, the financial requirement was estimated at 1.48 billion euros (1.77 billion US dollars) (source: US Agency for Defense and Security Cooperation DSCA).
  • Class 124 Frigate: Obsolescence Disposal Wide range sensor
    Dabei geht es um die Modernisierung bzw. Erweiterung des Radargeräts, um ballistische Raketen abwehren zu können (BMD). Im 8. Rüstungsbericht des Verteidigungsministeriums wurde das Finanzvolumen mit 327,1 Millionen Euro, im 9. Rüstungsbericht mit 314,8 Millionen Euro beziffert. Nach ESuT vorliegenden Informationen stehen im ausgehandelten Vertrag 219 Millionen Euro. Bei Fortgang des Projekts werden zusätzliche 19 Millionen für andere Leistungen (wie Beistellungen, Prüfungen einschließlich Nachweise, Zieldarstellungsmittel) erforderlich.
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
The frigate "Hamburg" belongs to class 124 (Photo: Bundeswehr)
  • To the Frigates the Class 123 To be able to use it for operations, according to ESuT information, around 587 million euros (BASIC package / SENSOR package, performance-based logistics services) must be spent on the new command and control system and on new radar systems. This amount also includes the financing of shipbuilding measures.
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
Class 123 "Brandenburg" frigate in See (Photo: BAAINBw)
  • Mine hunting boats of the MJ332C class / Integrated Mine Countermeasure System This is about eliminating obsolescence. The contract volume is 44.1 million euros.
  • Procurement project Radar navigation system for various classes. 39.978 million euros have to be spent on 40 on-board units including making them ready for supply.
  • Communication system for managing the damage prevention and combat service (SAGD) on board seagoing units. Replacement of trunked radio systems.
  • Procurement of recertification and repair equipment for the anti-ship guided missile RBS 15 Mk3
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
RBS15 Mk3 is part of the standard armament of the K130 corvettes, Photo: Bundeswehr
  • Conclusion of a contract for the manufacture and supply of guided missiles Naval Strike Missile Block 1A. According to information available to ESuT, the investment cost is 512.198 million euros.
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
Kongsbergs NSM has an impressive track record. (Photo: Kongsberg)

Unusual approach

The Ministry of Defense's controversial approach in the run-up to parliamentary treatment seems to have paid off. On the home stretch of the legislative period, the ministry had submitted armaments projects for approval, some of which had not yet been financially deposited in Section 14 (defense budget): 15 of 35 projects were presented with the note 'federal budget'. This means that funds from other budgets are made available for this. That also affected six naval projects. Defense Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer's “maneuver of the last moment” did not remain without the desired effect.

Investments of ten billion euros for the German naval shipbuilding industry

The decisions of the budget committee of the German Bundestag on June 23, mean that the German naval shipbuilding industry and its suppliers with orders in the amount of more than ten billion euros can count. It is therefore hardly surprising that the German maritime industry welcomes the release of the funds. In an interview with the magazine European security and technology said Reinhard Lüken, General Manager of the Association for Shipbuilding and Marine Technology (VSM): “This creates planning security for the German naval shipbuilding industry for the coming years. With its shipyards and system houses as well as a large number of highly specialized and competent supplier companies, naval shipbuilding is an important strategic location factor. "

Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine
Erfolgreiches Manöver im letzten Augenblick: Über neun Milliarden Euro für die Deutsche Marine

Rolf Wirtz, Chief Executive Officer of Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems, is pleased that the funds for the German-Norwegian submarine project 212CD have been approved and announced that the contract will be signed soon: "This is good news for Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems in Kiel, its employees and industrial partners. We look forward to being able to continue to build the world's most modern conventional submarines in order to preserve the key technology in Germany and thus to secure thousands of jobs for the foreseeable future. "

U212 CD for the German Navy in 2032 and 2034

Construction of the first submarine could begin in 2023 if the contract is signed this summer. The delivery of the first submarine for the Norwegian Navy is expected from 2029, while the delivery of the two boats for the German Navy is now planned for 2032 and 2034, as State Secretary Silberhorn announced in a response to a parliamentary question. In preparation for the expected order, Thyssenkrupp had already initiated investments of around 250 million euros for Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems in Kiel in 2019 in order to further develop it into a competence center for conventional submarine construction. The construction of a new shipbuilding hall has already started and is clearly visible on the shipyard site.

Other Navy vehicles

The list of procurement projects submitted to the Bundestag's budget committee does not include port support vehicles and other naval service vehicles (such as diving rescue boats and port tugs), the so-called Dergels. An expression of interest procedure under the title “Cooperation company for the maintenance of towing, maneuvering and maneuvering ability for sea-going units” was put out to tender on June 17, 2021. Companies have to express their interest by July 23, 2021. The Navy seems to be getting used to a leasing option - or has to get used to it.

The originally planned procurement of emergency vehicles (RHIB) for the special forces of the Navy (combat swimmers) has been postponed to the next legislature.

Hans Uwe Mergener and Christian Kanig