As the national anthems of Brazil and the UK played, employees and guests, including representatives from the Brazilian Navy, Royal Navy and UK Government, watched as members of the ship’s company raised the ensign for the first time, formally marking the handover of the Brazilian Navy’s newest vessel.
Mick Ord, Managing Director of BAE Systems’ Naval Ships business, said: “We are proud to deliver AMAZONAS to the Brazilian Navy today. The handover of the first ship marks both a significant stage in the programme and the close working relationship we are forming with Brazil. I am sure these highly capable vessels will be a great asset to the Brazilian Navy.”
The handover comes just six months after the £133 million contract for the supply of three Ocean Patrol Vessels and ancillary support services was signed. As part of the agreement, BAE Systems is also providing training for over 80 members of AMAZONAS’ crew, currently based in Portsmouth, in areas such as seamanship, electronics and propulsion. The ship will leave for Plymouth in July, where the crew will complete their training programme before setting sail for Brazil in August.
First of class, AMAZONAS, was constructed at BAE Systems’ Portsmouth facility. Her sister ships APA and ARAGUARI were built at the company’s Scotstoun shipyard on the Clyde and are expected to be delivered to the Brazilian Navy in December 2012 and April 2013 respectively.
The Ocean Patrol Vessels will provide Brazil with enhanced maritime capability. With a 30mm cannon and two 25mm guns, as well as a rigid inflatable boat and a helicopter flight deck capable of landing a medium-sized helicopter, the ships are ideal for performing maritime security in Brazil’s territorial waters, including the protection of the country’s oil and gas reserves. Designed to accommodate a crew of up to 70, with additional accommodation for 50 embarked troops or passengers and ample deck space for container storage, the vessels are also effective for search and rescue, disaster and humanitarian relief operations.
The contract, announced in January 2012, also includes a manufacturing licence to enable further vessels of the same class to be constructed in Brazil, helping to support the country’s naval re-equipment programme and strengthen its maritime industrial capability.
BAE Systems, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 6YU, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 1252 384719 Fax: +44 (0) 1252 383947
24hr media hotline: + 44 (0) 7801 717739