On June 10, the French Ministry of the Armed Forces announced the launch of the program relating to the design and construction of 10 offshore patrol vessels to take over from the venerable PHM, Avisos A69 retrofitted for this mission in the 1990s, and which now exceed 40 years of service. This program is the last part of a very eventful BATSIMAR program aimed at replacing the patrol boats of the French Navy. Although no information is obviously available today concerning the precise configuration of these 10 ships, the design phase having not yet begun, several announcements suggest interesting prospects in terms of performance and capacities.
The first sizing information is the budget allocated to the program, an envelope of €1 billion which makes it possible to consider vessels between 1000 and 1500 tonnes, positioning the French program at the top of the spectrum of European OPV programs. With such tonnage, French offshore patrol vessels could potentially have a helicopter platform , making it possible to increase the length of the vessel's engagement capabilities, in addition to drones whose use on board is already announced.
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