Singapore Navy (RSN) will receive two more Type-218SG submarines from Germany's ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems from 2024.
The submarines will join another two such submarines previously announced in 2013, scheduled to be delivered in 2021 and 2022, respectively, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen announced at this year's International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference (IMDEX) Asia, held Tuesday.
These are expected to replace older submarines in the Navy’s fleet. The new submarines boast design innovations to optimise training, operation and maintenance costs.
The submarines will also be equipped with "significantly improved capabilities" like modern combat systems and Air Independent Propulsion systems.
The ministry's contract with the shipbuilders includes a logistics package and a crew training arrangement in Germany.
“ASEAN countries, Australia, China and India have all increased the strength of their navies, with naval budgets in the Asia Pacific region expected to increase by 60 per cent through 2020,” Dr Ng said.
The minister also highlighted a report by naval defence market analysts AMI International, which estimated that approximately 800 more warships and submarines will operate in the Asia Pacific region by 2030.
“To be effective, the RSN needs to keep pace with this growth of navies in Asia. At steady state, the four Type-218SGs in service will complement each other in maintenance, logistics and operations, and have better capabilities to protect our sea lines of communication,” he said.
Running from May 16 to 18, this year’s IMDEX Asia touts itself as the largest to-date, with 230 participating companies from 29 countries including France, Germany and Italy, and the largest gathering of 28 warships from 20 navies.