Italian and French navies modernise their anti-air capabilities

A €1.5 billion contract was awarded to Naviris – joint venture formed by Fincantieri and Naval Group – and eurosam by the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR). The contract will cover the Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU) of the French and Italian Horizon class frigates. Naviris and eurosam will collaborate closely with Fincantieri and Naval Group for the new generation of Principal Anti-Air Missile System & Long-Range Radar (PAAMS & LRR). In the coming days Naviris will finalise subcontracts, including the one with Fincantieri worth €211 million. Other partners include Thales, MBDA Italia and MBDA France.

The MLU will modernise the entire vessel and enhance the anti-warfare capabilities of the Horizon frigates, built between 2000 and 2010 as part of a joint programme between Fincantieri and Naval Group set to equip the Italian and French navies with anti-air capabilities. The upgrade will include new weapon systems, command and control, and electronic warfare suites, providing the frigates with advanced capabilities to counter modern threats, such as hypersonic, ballistic, and supersonic sea-skimmer missiles, UAVs, and highly maneuvering aircraft in saturation attack scenarios.


Lt Col Stuart Crawford is a defence analyst and former army officer. Sign up for his podcasts and newsletters at



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