The press briefing organized by Navantia, at the Embassy of Spain, involved Ricardo Domínguez Garcia-Baquero, President of the Management Board at Navantia. The goal of the meeting was to present a broad offer dedicated to the Polish Navy and industry. It was stressed that the Spanish company is offering both the warship platform, based on the F100 design, as well as a proprietary CMS solution. It was noted that any Combat Management System may be installed on the F100 frigates - this includes the solution offered by Navantia, as well as other systems, as selected by the Poles.
The Spanish officials have devoted a lot of time to covering the details of the Transfer of Technology. Garcia-Baquero stressed the fact that ensuring Polish sovereignty is one of the key elements in the development of this project. It was noted that Transfer of Technology is not new to the Spanish industry, as similar undertakings have been pursued in the past, in collaboration with Australia, and Turkey. The main areas of cooperation listed include:
- Management of the complete defence system
- Engineering know-how
- Combat system integration capabilities
- Manufacturing capabilities
- Transfer of know-how and manufacturing capacity for the subcontracting parties
The transfer of technology proposal also includes support the customer may need in other programmes, also pursued in collaboration with Navantia. It would also include training and courses for the representatives of the Polish industry, as well as the establishment of a team of experts based in Poland, who would be responsible for coordinating the transfer of technology. The Navantia's offer also envisages a commitment made by the Spanish MoD, and the Spanish Navy - these entities are to provide Poland with expertise and data that Warsaw would need to proceed with the programme and keep the warship in active service.
When it comes to the warship itself, the proposal is based on the F100 frigate that, according to Navantia's representatives, is the best fit, considering the Polish requirements. Furthermore, the warship in question has been operationally proven, as different variants of the F100 frigate are operated by Spain, Australia, and Norway. The President of Navantia stressed the fact that the proposed design is the only one, among the Miecznik programme proposals, that already exists and is being used in active service. Recently the F100 frigates have been involved in the NATO Formidable Shield naval air defence exercise.
Responding to a question asked by Defence24.pl, the Navantia representatives confirmed that one of the bid variants includes the AEGIS air defence system. It was also noted, within the context of the recent designation of preference related to the CAMM missile in the Narew programme, that the warships offered can be integrated with any missile type indicated by the user - both European, as well as US-made ones.
Navantia has been working closely with Lockheed Martin for quite some time now, on integrating the AEGIS solution on its warships. Vessels as such are already in Service, in the Spanish, Norwegian, and Australian navies. AEGIS and the radars working within the system are being integrated here with a Spanish combat management system. The representatives of Navantia state that the above provides the user of the ship with a proper level of sovereignty. Talks involving Lockheed Martin on potential procurement of the AEGIS system have already been taking place. Should Poland go forward with this acquisition, some elements would need to be sourced from the US government.
Navantia's offer comes in a few variants, thus, other solutions are also available. During the briefing, it was also hinted that the Spanish industry is also interested in other warship procurement programmes pursued by the Polish Navy, such as the Orka submarines acquisition, as well as surface combatant programmes: Ratownik and Logistics Support Vessel.