Egypt to build four Swiftships


An Egyptian shipyard is to assemble two 28-metre Swiftships patrol craft and co-produce two more under a US$20 million contract modification to a Foreign Military Sales Programme purchase approved earlier this month.

Swiftships Shipbuilders of Morgan City, Louisiana, is being paid US$20 221 529 to design and construct the four coastal patrol craft (CPC). The contract also cover associated crew familiarisation training and technical services for the Egyptian Navy.

The US Department of Defence in a February 11 notice said the award modifies previously awarded contract N00024-09-C-2210.This was a firm-fixed price contract for the design and construction of two 28-metre CPCs for Egypt at a cost of US$13 414 450. These were to have been built in Louisiana with a delivery date of May 2010.The new contract sees the number of CPC doubled and some 25% of the work transferred to an Egyptian workforce at an unspecified yard at Alexandria in the Nile delta. Construction is now expected to be complete by February 2014.

The authoratative London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) says in its 2010 Military Balance publication that the Egptian Coast Guard, part of the Egyptian Navy, already operates nine Swiftships.

February 2009 news reports noted that Swiftships had also been contracted to build 25 26-metre patrol craft for the Egyptian Navy. The Swiftships model 25MPB0500 Swift Protector is a twin waterjet, diesel-powered all welded aluminium alloy patrol boat. The IISS notes at least six have already been delivered to the Coast Guard. The boats were designed to control emergency situations in local zones; support Navy and Coast Guard security operations; control sea-lanes; conduct Coast Guard, police and customs law enforcement for controlling economic zones; as well as search and rescue missions.