Fincantieri has announced the technical launch of the Italian Navy’s new multipurpose offshore patrol ship (PPA-Pattugliatore Polivalente d’Altura).

The event took place at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Riva Trigoso, Genoa, Italy.

Fincantieri said in a statement that the PPA, named ‘Giovanni delle Bande Nere’, is the fourth ship.

The company is building seven PPAs as part of the Italian Navy’s fleet renewal plan, which also includes construction of one logistic support ship, and one landing helicopter dock.

The plan was approved by the Italian Government and Parliament under its Naval Act launched in May 2015.

The vessels are being developed and built under a contract awarded by the Organisation Conjointe de Cooperation sur l’Armement, the international organization for cooperation on arms (OCCAR).

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The PPA ships will be delivered in three different configurations based on a common platform, namely ‘Light’, ‘Light Plus’, and ‘Full’.

‘Light’ version features a complete set of artillery, while ‘Light Plus’ has an added missile firing capability and with actuators.

The ‘Full’ version will be able to perform tasks in all warfare areas.

The fourth vessel is the first PPA in “Full” version. First steel cutting for the ship was held in March 2019. It is scheduled for delivery in 2024.

This ship will be equipped with generator sets manufactured by Fincantieri subsidiary Isotta Fraschini Motori.

In April 2021, Fincantieri conducted the first steel cut of the sixth PPA.