It will take at least eight years before Norway can take delivery of four new submarines from German producer ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems. The highly advanced subs have been described as the next-most-important part of Norway’s defense after its fighter jets.
“The submarines have great significance for our ability to defend Norway’s maritime interests,” said Defense Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide when announcing the awarding of the submarine contract. It’s believed to be valued at as much as NOK 20 billion, but Søreide refused to specify how much the submarines will actually cost, pending final selection of a shipyard.
The new submarines are said to be extremely difficult to detect, that they have strong attack powers, can remain underwater for long periods at a time and can sail without any need for supplies longer than any of Norway’s current subs, the oldest of which are 25 years. Details of the subs’ abilities and weapon systems were not revealed.
Søreide said that Norway’s cooperation with Germany “will ensure that Norway gets the submarines we need, at the same we contribute to ‘Smart Defence’ and a more effective material cooperation in NATO.” They’re due for delivery between 2025 and 2028.