Egypt receives fourth submarine

The project that started about a decade ago has ended. Egypt has an option of expanding the project and acquiring two additional submarines from Germany

Egypt receives fourth submarine

Egyptian Navy's S44 Type 209 submarine at the naming and launching ceremony (Credit: TKMS)

During a ceremony at a shipyard in Germany, the fourth 209/1400 submarine was handed over to the Egyptian Navy. The handover of the submarine, which set off in the direction of Egypt, marked the end of an Egyptian project to upgrade its underwater warfare capabilities that started about a decade ago.    

When the contract was signed between Egypt and Germany, it included an option of expanding the project to include two additional submarines and the development of advanced maintenance and repair capabilities in Egypt including for the four MEKO 200 ships (similar to the Israeli Navy's Sa'ar-6 ships) that the Egyptian Navy acquired from Germany. 

Since April 2020, Egyptian President al-Sisi, together with the commander of the Navy and the head of the Navy's technological branch, have been in intensive contacts with Germany's Lurssen for development of the Egyptian shipyards. The last meeting between the sides took place a number of days ago. Egypt aspires to develop independent capabilities, including infrastructure and training of suitable manpower, that will enable Egypt to maintain and build warships by itself.    

Egypt has even reached agreements with France and the U.S. for the transfer of maintenance capabilities and the development of independent capabilities. Thus, for example, a number of years ago, the Egyptian Navy acquired four Gowind ships from France, with two of them built in France and two of them built in Egypt.  

al-Sisi continues to strengthen the capabilities of the Egyptian fleet, which he sees as an important and main strategic arm, especially against the threats facing Egypt in recent years and in the coming years, mainly the Turkish Navy that operates in the Mediterranean area and in the Red Sea, the Iranian Navy forces that operate in the Red Sea and in the Arabian Sea, the Houthi rebels of Yemen, and the rebel forces in Libya. Those are the main threats against which Egypt is building up its naval power, with the Israeli Navy, which Egypt still perceives as a potential threat, in the background. 

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