Poland plans to purchase submarines
The Minister of Defense of Poland announced the launch of the Orka program implementation to purchase submarines.
Mariusz Błaszczak, Deputy Prime Minister of Poland, Head of the Ministry of Defense, announced this on May 24 at the opening of the Defense Conference at the National Stadium.
“We are starting the implementation of the Orka program. This year, we plan to launch the procedure to purchase submarines along with the transfer of the necessary technologies,” the Minister of Defense said.
He noted that he will soon provide more detailed information on the number, equipment, and basic characteristics of the boats.
“We want our submarines to be distinguished by high autonomy and power in terms of armament, as well as configuration flexibility. But they were also adapted to undetectable movement at high speed and prolonged stay underwater,” the Head of the Ministry of Defense noted.
“The vessels must be able to use torpedoes and cruise missiles launched from underwater, capable of hitting targets deep in the aggressor’s territory,” Błaszczak said.
The Orka program is one of Poland’s largest marine projects. The country’s Maritime Defense Department has long planned the acquisition of third-generation diesel-electric submarines capable of operating outside the Baltic Sea and carrying long-range cruise missiles.
The initial 2012 plan of the Orka program suggested the acquisition or construction of three modern submarines. However, due to the parliamentary elections at the end of 2015, the project was suspended.
The situation was also further complicated after Poland wished to integrate cruise missiles into the new submarines. Poland has started negotiations with the USA (UGM-109 missiles for Type 212A/214A and A26) and France (MdCN for SCORPENE).
At the moment, the open sources suggest that the project has three applicants :
- Type 212A and 214A submarines of the German holding Thyssen Krupp Marine Systems;
- Scorpène-class submarines of the French company Naval Group;
- A-26 class submarines of the Swedish company Saab Kockums.
The new submarines are meant to replace the only Soviet-era submarine of Project 877 Paltus in service with Poland.
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