Surface Forces: July 30, 2000


France has decided that it would cost more to refit the 22 multi-role frigates in its Navy to extend their service lives than it would be to build new ships. Consequently, the Leygues, Tourville, Estienne, and Cassard classes will start retiring when their 30-year lives expire starting in 2008. By that time, the first of 17 new multi-role frigates should enter service. The French also expect to buy five ships of the LaFayette class and several ships of the Horizon anti-aircraft frigate class.--Stephen V Cole


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