President Emmanuel Macron and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Micotakis on Tuesday signed a contract for Athens to buy three Belharra frigates worth €5 billion.
France’s Naval Group will supply Greece with frigates with a displacement of 4,600 tonnes and a length of over 120 metres each. The frigates will be equipped with ultra-modern radars designed by Thales as well as anti-aircraft guns and anti-submarine weapons.
This is “a testimony of confidence and a demonstration of the quality of the French offer” – declared President Macron at the Elysée Palace after the signing.
The letter of intent for the procurement was signed in 2019 by the Greek government. The signing of the contract comes after months of ongoing talks between Paris and Athens.
Naval Group was competing with the Netherlands, Germany and the United States for the contract.
According to BFM TV station sources, Greece rejected the US offer due to costly maintenance.
The signing of the contract came at an important time for France, after Australia scrapped a €56 billion contract to supply 12 conventionally-powered submarines.