Covid-19: Singapore delays deliveries of submarines and helicopters, but continues defense modernization

According to Defense News, the Singaporean armed forces recently made announcements about the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on their materiel procurement programs. The main delays should concern the deliveries of new generation submarines and transport helicopters planned for this year, which should be postponed by one or two years. Purchase schedule F-35B stealth fighter aircraft would not be impacted by the current crisis, however.

If the Asia-Pacific region was one of the first affected by the pandemic, the situation now seems to have almost returned to normal in Singapore, which has successfully managed the spread of the virus in the country. Defense Minister Ng Eng Hen confirmed that the young men called up to serve in the armed forces as part of the conscription had resumed their training. Singaporean forces are also expected to resume participation in major international exercises held in the region. A Formidable class frigate (Singaporean version of the French Lafayette class) should participate in the international RIMPAC exercise organized by the US Navy in Hawaii next month.

The first Type 218SG was launched in February 2019 in Kiel, Germany. It should not be delivered to the Singapore Navy before 2022 now.

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