In a move to bolster maritime security, the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) has awarded Saab a contract valued at approximately Skr400m ($37.6m) for the production of ten combat boats.

The contract, set to commence in 2024, emphasises Sweden’s proactive stance in fortifying its naval defences as regional security dynamics evolve.

The combat boats, designed on the CB90 Next Generation framework, will be constructed at Saab’s Docksta shipyard. These vessels can perform an array of missions, which is important for Sweden, given the Baltic Sea’s importance.

Mats Wicksell, head of Saab’s business area Kockums, emphasised the multifaceted capabilities of these new boats, stating, “Combat boats are advanced platforms that can be used for many different types of missions. We are proud that Saab’s naval capabilities continue to contribute to Sweden’s defence.”

For instance, almost all vessels in Sweden’s navy are domestically designed and produced, as highlighted by GlobalData’s “Sweden Defense Market 2023-2028” report.

This order also reflects a broader trend of increased defence spending and military preparedness in response to growing regional instability. As tensions in the Baltic Sea escalate, Sweden’s investment in such naval platforms signals its commitment to maintaining security and readiness in the face of potential threats.

This development is part of a broader defence strategy that sees Sweden enhancing its naval capabilities. In recent years, there has been a resurgence in military investments, focusing on modernising equipment and ensuring that the Swedish Navy can effectively respond to conventional and asymmetric threats. The procurement of these combat boats is a testament to this vision, aiming to secure Sweden’s interests in a volatile geopolitical environment.

Babcock International and Saab have collaborated to design Sweden’s future Luleå-class warships. The partnership aims to develop four corvettes to replace the ageing Visby-class vessels. Simultaneously, the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) initiated a procurement process for four multi-purpose barges to enhance naval logistics.

The CB90 Next Generation boats are expected to enhance the Swedish Navy’s operational capacity. According to GlobalData’s intelligence on the Swedish defence market, the Swedish Navy currently has 165 CB90-class light combat vessels in its fleet.

As these boats roll out over the coming years, they will provide the Swedish Navy with the flexibility and firepower needed to safeguard its waters and contribute to regional stability.

Saab’s new order reflects Sweden’s ongoing commitment to national and regional security. The investment in combat boats clearly indicates the country’s resolve to maintain a defence posture in an increasingly uncertain world.

Saab reported a robust first quarter of 2024, marked by growth and an upgraded sales forecast for the year ahead. The Swedish aerospace and defence company recorded a 9% increase in order intake. Notably, Saab has enhanced its 2024 sales outlook to a projected 15-20% organic growth, up from the initial 12-16% forecast.