Orizzonte Sistemi Navali has received an order from OCCAR, the organisation for joint armament cooperation, to construct the ninth and tenth frégate européen multi-mission (FREMM) for the Italian Navy.
Valued at €764m, the new order will mark the completion of a contract awarded for the supply of ten vessels to the navy.
Orizzonte Sistemi Navali, a joint venture between Fincantieri and Finmeccanica, is the prime contractor for Italy within the international Italian and French FREMM programme.
Finmeccanica CEO and general manager Mauro Moretti said: "The Italian and French programme for the new FREMM (multi-purpose) European multi mission frigates is the most important European military naval programme ever implemented.
"The vessel-based systems produced by Finmeccanica are capable of managing a range of continuously developing operational scenarios with cutting edge technology."
The new vessels are expected to be delivered after 2020 and will replace the Lupo and Maestrale-class frigates built by Fincantieri in the 1970s.
Featuring a high degree of flexibility, the 144m-long and 19.7m-wide vessels will be capable of operating in all tactical situations.
The ships will have a displacement at full load of around 6,700t and a maximum speed of over 27k. It will be able to accommodate a crew of 200.
The FREMM multi-mission ship programme is part of a major cooperation agreement between France and Italy. It includes 11 frigates for France, with the deliveries closing in 2022.
Italy will receive the vessels in an anti-submarine warfare model and a general-purpose vehicle version. They will be able to operate in a wide range of scenarios, including patrolling and protecting the Mediterranean area.
Image: The fifth Italian FREMM frigate, Alpino. Photo: courtesy of Orizzonte Sistemi Navali S.p.A.