The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has officially accepted the first Supply-class auxiliary oilier replenishment (AOR) vessel, ‘NUSHIP Supply’.

The acceptance marks a major milestone in the Supply-class shipbuilding programme.

In May 2016, Spain’s Navantia was awarded the contract to build two AORs.

The Supply-class ships will replace existing vessels retired HMAS Success and HMAS Sirius. They will provide afloat logistics support to the Australian navy’s ships and bridge the current capability gap.

Australia Defence Minister Linda Reynolds announced the formal acceptance of the AOR ship.

Reynolds said: “Despite the impacts of Covid-19, the Australian Government has worked with the prime and sub-contractors to innovate and implement solutions to deliver the Royal Australian Navy’s first Supply-class vessel Nuship Supply, based on the Spanish Cantabria design.

“The Australian Government remains committed to maximising Australian industry involvement in the shipbuilding enterprise.

“Australian industry benefited with more than $130m spent on engagement of local industry partners to support the ship’s fit out in Australia.”

NUSHIP Supply is expected to sail to its Sydney homeport next week.

It was launched at the Navantia Shipyards in Ferrol, Spain on 24 November 2018. NUSHIP Supply completed its Sea Acceptance trials in August 2020.

The RAN’s second AOR vessel, NUSHIP Stalwart, is expected to enter service later this year. It was launched in 2019.

In February last year, the Australian Defence accepted the delivery of the third Hobart-class guided missile air warfare destroyer (AWD), NUSHIP Sydney.