French Navy receives first FREMM air defence frigate
Naval Group announced on 16 April the delivery of the FREMM DA air defence frigate Alsace to the French Navy base in Toulon.
Alsace is the first of the two air defence frigates to be delivered to the French Navy as part of the FREMM multimission frigate programme.
French shipbuilder Naval Group reported that the ship would be based in Toulon, and its delivery is on schedule despite the difficulties posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Naval Group Chairman and CEO Pierre Eric Pommellet said in an official statement: ‘We are very pleased to be here in Toulon for the delivery, on schedule despite the [COVID-19] health crisis, of this first FREMM multimission frigate with enhanced air defence capability.'
FREMM is one of the most ambitious and innovative European naval defence projects to date, involving 18 ships: eight for France and ten for Italy. These will be a mixture of anti-submarine warfare, anti-air warfare (like Alsace) and general-purpose variants.
Naval Group has been building French FREMM vessels since November 2012. Design work on Alsace began in 2016, and the ship was launched in April 2019.
Following its delivery, Alsace will be followed by Lorraine, which Naval Group reports will be delivered in the second half of 2022.