DCNS delivers first Mistral-class LHD to Egypt
DCNS has delivered the first of the Egyptian Navy’s two helicopter carriers, the LHD (Landing Helo Dock) Gamal Abdel Nasser. The flag transfer ceremony took place on 2nd June in the presence of Egyptian and French Navy Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Rabie and Admiral Rogel, DCNS Chairman and CEO Hervé Guillou and STX France Chairman and CEO Laurent Castaing.
The contract for the supply of two Mistral-class LHDs was signed on 10th October 2015. The flag transfer of the first of the two ships marks the latest stage in the strategic partnership between the two countries. The partnership began in July 2014 with the signature of a contract for the sale of four Gowind corvettes, and continued in August 2015 with the delivery of the FREMM multi-mission frigate Tahya Misr to the Egyptian Navy.
In addition, DCNS is committed to supporting the Egyptian Navy over the longer term, thanks to the multiannual maintenance contracts for the Egyptian vessels as well as through technology transfer allowing the Alexandria Shipyards to build three of the four Gowind corvettes. Other projects are currently under consideration to accelerate full operational capability of the Egyptian Navy.
The LHD Gamal Abdel Nasser will leave Saint-Nazaire in the next few days with the associated support vessels: two new-generation landing craft (CTM NG) and one EDAR fast amphibious landing craft. Before sailing to its home port of Alexandria, the ship will participate in a joint exercise between the Egyptian and French Navies. Since February, 180 Egyptian sailors have been undergoing training in Saint-Nazaire on the LHD Nasser.
The 199m Mistral-class LHD allows a wide spectrum of civil and military missions. It can be used to project troops, equipment, heavy helicopters and landing craft around the world. It also has an onboard hospital, and can carry out large-scale humanitarian missions. It is equipped to serve as a command vessel within a naval force.
The two LHDs being delivered to Egypt were initially intended for Russia, but the sale was blocked in the aftermath of the Russia-Ukraine crisis.