A big step towards reviving the Greek shipbuilding industry was made after Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis' visit to Israel where it was agreed that ONEX Neorion Shipyards, the successor company of Neorio Syros Shipyards, will undertake the construction of seven new Navy Corvettes, which will be based on the plans of Israel Shipyards in Haifa.
The first step in this agreement will be the co-production of the Themistocles corvette, where an agreement was signed on June 16. According to Business Daily, there is a verbal agreement for the construction of six more which will be announced soon. The construction part of the works will be carried out by the shipyards of Syros.
It is worth noting that ONEX and Israel Shipyards are working closely together to promote the Themistocles corvette in the international market, at a later stage.
The Themistoklis corvette is a state-of-the-art vessel that aims to meet the needs of surveillance in the Eastern Mediterranean. The design of the Themistoklis corvette combines the know-how of Greek, Israeli and American industries, and the next generation of operational specifications in the future of naval warfare.
It is a multi-purpose boat with a length of 72 meters and a displacement of about 800 tons. The Themistocles corvette can reach speeds of over 30 knots (kn). It can support a medium-sized marine helicopter, but it also supports unique capabilities for developing special forces units.
The corvette includes state-of-the-art weapons and electronic systems, which can be adapted to the special requirements of the Navy. The ship will have a range of 5,000 nautical miles and 21 days of autonomy. It is powered by a crew of 45 and can carry up to 20 special forces personnel.
As for the completion and delivery of the first corvette, sources close to ONEX report that it is possible for a ship to be ready every 250 days and be delivered complete with all the defence equipment in 350 days. Based on this plan, in the summer of 2021, Themistocles will take its place in the Greek Navy.
According to the official website of the Themistocles Corvette, it's mission includes:
- Open Sea Patrolling and Surveillance operations
- Maritime Sovereignty protection
- Off-Shore facilities protection
- EEZ protection
- Anti terror/ smuggling /illegal activities interdiction
- Minimise illegal immigration transits
- Search and Rescue operations in coordination with SAR Helicopters
- Participation in Naval combat operations
- Fishing protection and control
- Support of boarding/landing and intervention forces
- Sea Pollution containment activities
In addition, the Themistocles can accommodate advance weapon configurations, including:
- Launchers for anti-missiles defence missiles
- Surface-to-surface missiles launchers
- Up to 76 mm Naval gun
- Remotely controlled stabilised Naval gun system up to 30mm
- Command and Control system
- ESM & ECM
- Advanced Multifunction Search Radar
- Heavy machine guns – 0.5” / 7.62mm
- Most advanced day and night vision system