On August 16, a steel-cutting ceremony was held at PGZ Naval Shipyard in Gdynia for the first frigate-class ship for the Polish Navy. This marked the beginning of a new phase in implementing the Miecznik (eng. Swordfish) programme.
The ceremony, attended among others by Minister of National Defence Mariusz Błaszczak, Minister of State Assets Jacek Sasin and Head of the National Security Bureau Jacek Siewiera, was an important moment in the history of the Polish Navy. Under the Swordfish programme, it will acquire three frigate-class missile ships by 2032. These will be the most modern and best-armed vessels the Navy will have at its disposal.
– This is a very important moment for the Polish Armaments Group, especially for the PGZ-Miecznik consortium and its foreign partners. On the one hand, all design and technical arrangements have been finalised, and on the other hand, what we have all been waiting for – the physical work on the construction of the first unit – has begun. This is the result of several months of hard work, for which I would like to thank all parties involved – not only the crew of PGZ Naval Shipyard, but also the employees of the Polish Armaments Group, Remontowa Shipbuilding and our British partners. For the entire shipbuilding industry, this is a momentous occasion. I am glad that it takes place at the PGZ Naval Shipyard, which has been in the industry for more than a century” stressed the President of the Management Board of PGZ S.A. Sebastian Chwałek.
Three modern Miecznik frigates for the Polish Navy will be built at PGZ Naval Shipyard in cooperation with the leaders of the arms industry (Babcock, MBDA, Thales, Remontowa Shipbuilding) as part of the largest-ever contract awarded to the Polish shipbuilding industry. The first frigate will be built by 2026. The Miecznik programme is being implemented according to schedule.
The multi-purpose vessels of this class will significantly increase the capabilities of the Polish Navy. They will allow it to carry out a wide range of tasks at sea, including securing shipping lanes and critical infrastructure. The ships will increase the combat potential of the Polish Armed Forces. Still, they will also be an important contribution of the Republic of Poland within the North Atlantic Alliance, e.g. by carrying out tasks within the framework of NATO Standing Ship Teams.
The multi-purpose frigates will have modern radiolocation, artillery and missile systems. Thanks to these ships, the Polish Navy will gain new opportunities to perform various tasks in Polish maritime areas and participate in missions and exercises with NATO allies.
Implementing the project in Poland allows for creation of approximately 2,000 jobs in shipyards, armament companies and other industrial sectors directly involved in the project. The competencies gained will allow new capabilities to be developed and help work on other projects for the Polish Navy.
The contract with the Armaments Inspectorate was signed on July 27, 2021. The PGZ-MIECZNIK Consortium consists of the Polish Armaments Group and PGZ Naval Shipyard.
Strategic partners in the project are Remontowa Shipbuilding S.A., Babcock, Thales UK and MBDA UK.