The Canadian Halifax Class frigates will be modernised and refitted under the Halifax Class modernisation (HCM) / frigate life extension (FELEX) project, Canadian Defence Minister Peter MacKay has said.

The Department of National Defence awarded the $549m contract to Halifax Shipyards to extend the life of 12 frigates of the Canadian fleet.

Under the modernisation programme, frigates will be equipped with a new command and control system, new radar capability, a new electronic warfare system, and upgraded communications and missiles.

The frigates will also be provided with a mid-life refit to remain effective to the projected end of their service life.

The HCM / FELEX project is a Government of Canada initiative to remain commited to the equipment pillar of the Canada first defence strategy.