The Egyptian Ministry of Defence has signed a contract with French Shipyard DCNS for the delivery of two Mistral-class projection and command ships (BPCs).

Last month, Egypt agreed to buy these vessels, originally built for Russia, in a €950m ($1bn) deal.

DCNS chairman and CEO Hervé Guillou said: "After the contracts for the supply of four Gowind corvettes and a FREMM frigate, we are proud that the Egyptian Navy continues to place its trust in us today by signing a contract for the delivery of two Mistral-class BPCs.

"With seven combat ships already ordered to date and a latest-generation frigate already in operation in the Egyptian Navy, DCNS is thus participating in the modernisation of the defence infrastructure of this strategic French ally."

The Mistral-class warship, which is capable of cruising at a maximum speed of 19k, features six helicopter landing zones and will be capable of carrying up to 16 heavy helicopters, in addition to tanks and approximately 500 troops.

Featuring efficient communication systems, the vessel can be deployed for force-projection, peacekeeping and humanitarian-support operations.

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By GlobalData

Egypt agreed to buy these new-build helicopter carriers after France and Russia terminated a €1.2bn ($1.3bn) contract over the Ukraine crisis.

The new Mistral-class warships are scheduled to join the naval fleet in the summer of 2016 following training of the future crews in Saint-Nazaire.

In addition to the two warships, the shipyard will also deliver four new-generation landing craft and two fast landing craft (EDAR).

"We are proud that the Egyptian Navy continues to place its trust in us today."

DCNS is currently building four Gowind 2500 corvettes for Egypt.

With these new vessels, the Egyptian Navy is expected to deploy a fleet of at least seven DCNS-built combat ships by 2020, the shipyard stated.

In June, the Egyptian Navy received a multi-mission FREMM frigate, Tahya Misr, from DCNS.

The vessel was originally built for the French Navy, but was transferred to Egypt after consideration of the country’s urgent order for the vessel.

Image: Featuring an onboard hospital, the 199m-long Mistral-class warship can carry out large-scale humanitarian missions. Photo: © DCNS.