A ceremony was held at the OCCAR-EA premises, to celebrate the signing of the Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU) Contract for the French and Italian HORIZON Air Defence Frigates. On behalf of the French and Italian procurement agencies DGA and SEGREDIFESA/NAVARM, the OCCAR Director, Mr Joachim Sucker, signed a contract for approximately €1.5 billion with the Co-Contractors Mrs. Eva Bruxmeier, the Managing Director of eurosam and NAVIRIS, Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Damien Raby and Mr. Enrico Bonetti, Chief Operational Officer. This follows the signing of a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by the Nations on June 20, 2023.
This new contract covers the full enhancement of the four (4) HORIZON Class vessels, namely the “Andrea Doria”, the “Caio Duilio”, the “Forbin” and the “Chevalier Paul”. The refurbished ships will be delivered by the end of 2027 (1st Italian), mid-2029 (2nd Italian), end of 2029 (1st French) and end of 2030 (2nd French). The major changes that will be made concern the AAW (Anti-Air Warfare) and EW (Electronic Warfare) domains, whilst optimising the initial In-Service Support (ISS) for common activities and maximising the benefits of cooperative procurement practices.
This signature represents a significant achievement to further strengthen the cooperation between France and Italy in the naval domain. OCCAR is proud of the trust placed by the Nations in its management capabilities to successfully manage an ambitious new armament cooperation project. The French and Italian Navy General Staffs, their national naval procurement organisations, OCCAR and the defence consortium consisting of NAVIRIS, EUROSAM, FINCANTIERI, NAVAL GROUP, THALES, LEONARDO, MBDA and SIGEN are jointly working on this high-level cooperative naval project.
The Horizon class (French: Classe Horizon; Italian: Classe Orizzonte) is a class of air-defence destroyers in service with the French and Italian navies. They are designated as destroyers by the Italians and using NATO classification but are referred to as “frigates” by the French. The programme started as the Common New Generation Frigate (CNGF), a three-nation collaboration between France, the United Kingdom, and Italy to develop a new generation of air-defence warships. Differing national requirements, workshare disagreements and delays led to the UK withdrawing from the project in 1999 to develop the Type 45 destroyer. The FREMM multipurpose frigate were built using the same company structure as the Horizon project.