Greek Navy's MEKO Frigates Set for Upgrade in €700-750 Million Deal

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After a prolonged delay, the Greek Navy is poised for a significant overhaul as the much-awaited mid-life modernisation of its four MEKO frigates receives the green light. This crucial upgrade not only promises to breathe new life into these naval assets but also aims to transform them into cutting-edge tools in the arsenal of the Greek Armed Forces.

According to reports from, a pivotal meeting took place at the General Staff on Wednesday, attended by key figures including Antonis Economou, the Secretary General of the Ministry of National Defence, and Vice Admiral Dimitris Kataras, Chief of the General Staff. Representatives from the German-Dutch consortium ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS)-Thales Netherlands, tasked with executing the upgrade, were also present. The meeting effectively sealed the deal to proceed with the contracting of the project.

The consortium, which is not only responsible for the construction but also the upgrade of the MEKO frigates, had encountered financial disagreements, with initial estimates of €600 million ballooning to potentially €900 million. However, persistent efforts from the Ministry of Defence and the Navy, recognising the imperative nature of the upgrade, led to successful negotiations. The final cost is now pegged between €700 and €750 million, subject to formalities, with contracts set to be finalised by June and executed entirely within Greek shipyards.

The modernisation endeavour comes as a long-awaited relief for Navy officials who have stressed the urgency of the upgrade, emphasising that it should have been undertaken years ago. The MEKO frigates, vital assets in Greece's defence arsenal, boast formidable strike capabilities, housing an array of advanced weapons systems including HARPOON surface-to-surface guided missiles, ESSM surface-to-air guided missiles, and sophisticated anti-submarine warfare technology.

Despite recent acquisitions such as the Belharra frigates and potential additions like modern corvettes, the modernisation of the MEKO frigates remains imperative. With escalating geopolitical tensions in the region and increasing international obligations, ensuring the readiness and efficacy of these naval assets is paramount.


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