Minister visits Spanish frigate

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The Hon Christopher Pyne MP

Minister for Defence Industry

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Rory Grant: 0439 764 809,

Eleisa Hancock: 0427 981 990,

Defence Media (02) 6127 1999,

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18 March 2017

Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne, visited the Spanish naval ship ESPS Cristobal Colon today to inspect the capabilities of the ship and receive an update on the progress of mutual training being conducted with the Royal Australian Navy.

The Cristobal Colon was built by Navantia who are one of the three tenderers downselected for the Future Frigate programme.

“The Cristobal Colon is a highly capable vessel and demonstrates the kind of capability that Navantia are offering in the Future Frigate project,” Minister Pyne said

“Navantia was instrumental in turning around the Air Warfare Destroyer programme in Australia, taking the Osborne shipyard to internationally competitive standards.”

“Navantia’s ability to run shipyards, Australia’s long relationship with Spain and the capability of ships like the Cristobal Coban are among the reasons Navantia were downselected for Australia’s Future Frigate programme.”

“Australia’s Future Frigate programme will provide a cutting edge, anti-submarine warfare capability to Australia’s navy.”

“The project itself will directly create more than 2500 jobs and will form the backbone of Australia’s future surface shipbuilding industry.” Mr Pyne said.

“Australia’s defence materiel projects with Spain are worth almost $13 billion across shipbuilding and aircraft,” he said.

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