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BAE Awarded $4.9B Contract to Build 5 More Frigates for UK Navy

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said the U.K. government awarded BAE Systems a $4.9 billion contract to construct five more Type 26 frigates for the country’s naval force amid increasing threats posed by Russia.

The five ships are in addition to the three vessels that are now in the construction phase, bringing the total number of frigates to eight that are expected to be completed by mid-2030s, the U.K. government said Monday.

As we give the Ukrainian people the support they need, we are also harnessing the breadth and depth of UK expertise to protect ourselves and our allies. This includes building the next generation of British warships,” Sunak said.

The British frigate project will sustain 1,700 jobs at BAE’s sites in Scotland over the next 10 years and additional 2,300 jobs across the U.K. supply chain.

Bloomberg reported the frigates will carry out anti-submarine missions and support air defense and operations.

The British prime minister also confirmed that he will drop his predecessor’s pledge to raise the defense budget to 3 percent of national income by the end of the decade, saying the U.K. is one of the few nations that meet NATO’s defense spending target of 2 percent, according to the report.

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