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Austal sells two Cape class patrol boats to Trinidad & Tobago


An artist’s impression of a Cape class patrol boat in Trinidad & Tobago service. (Austal)

The government of Trinidad & Tobago has announced its intention to buy two Austal Cape class patrol boats for border protection duties for the Caribbean nation, at a cost of about A$100 million.

The two vessels will join six Austal fast patrol craft in service, and will likely be financed through the Australian Government’s Export Finance and Insurance Corporation (EFIC). The vessels will be supported by Austal in service, and the company will establish a service centre in Trinidad for this work.

“This is an outstanding success for Austal and demonstrates the strong export potential of our local defence industry,” Minister for defence Industry Christopher Pyne said in a July 26 release. “The Cape class patrol boats, used by the Australian Border Force and Royal Australian Navy, provide excellent range and endurance and respond to a range of maritime security threats.”

The two 58m vessels will be built at Austal’s Henderson WA facility where 10 Cape class boats have already been built for the ABF and RAN, and delivery to Trinidad & Tobago is expected by mid-2020.

Australian Defence Vessel Cape Fourcroy departs HMAS Coonawarra to conduct continuation training as part of Operation Resolute. *** Local Caption *** The new Cape Class Patrol Boats will play a significant role with the capability that defends Australia’s maritime security interests as part of Operation RESOLUTE. The Cape Class Patrol Boats are manned by two crews, 'Port' and 'Starboard', with one crew embarked and one disembarked at any given time. 

Cape class patrol boat ADV Cape Fourcroy near Darwin. (Defence)