The Polish Armaments Agency has chosen Babcock’s Arrowhead 140 (AH140) design for the country’s new MIECZNIK (Swordfish) frigate programme.

The AH140 was one of three proposed designs shortlisted by the PGZ-MIECZNIK consortium, which is led by Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa (Polish Armaments Group, PGZ), in July 2021. 

The consortium will deliver three coastal defence frigates as part of an order placed by the Polish Armaments Inspectorate (AI). The vessels will enhance Poland’s naval capabilities.

Under this frigate programme, Babcock will serve as the technology partner and platform design provider.

The company will now work with the PGZ-MIECZNIK consortium and Babcock on the design and systems integration planning process, which is anticipated to complete this year.

Babcock will assist with the construction of three AH140 frigates in Polish shipyards once the design phase is concluded.

Through a design licensing agreement and transfer of technologies and know-how, the company will customise the frigate design and make effective use of Poland’s shipbuilding and industrial capabilities, as well as its global supply chain.

Babcock CEO David Lockwood said: “Its adaptability and capability mean we can tailor the design to suit the needs of the Polish Navy. Driven by innovation and backed by heritage, the Arrowhead 140 frigate has British ingenuity and engineering at its core.

“But above all, we are looking forward to working with Poland as it develops and grows its shipbuilding capability, creating real social and economic benefits for the country.

“As well as delivering a first-class frigate that will contribute significantly to the sovereign defence capability of Poland, this is a demonstrable commitment to a long-term industrial relationship between the UK and Poland.”

In a separate development, Thales has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with PGZ-MIECZNIK Consortium to provide a tactical information and command system (TACTICOS) for the programme.

Under this agreement, Thales will work together with the Polish industry and consortium members to strengthen Poland’s air and missile defence capabilities.

Thales UK chief executive and chairman Alex Cresswell said: “Being down-selected by Polish Armed Forces recognises the technology we can offer but also the experience we bring to integrating and delivering complex systems.”

Last year, Indonesia selected the AH140 platform as the basis of its new frigate programme.