New Zealand Navy seeking new tanker to support Pacific Defense Operations
The Royal New Zealand Navy is to buy a new tanker vessel that will enable
the New Zealand Defence Force ( NZDF) to expand the scope of its operations
in the South Pacific, Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman said Wednesday.
The new vessel would replace the navy's current tanker, HMNZS Endeavour,
which would reach the end of its service life in 2018 and would fail
to comply with new international maritime regulations, Coleman said
in a statement.
HMNZS Endeavour underway between RFA Wave Ruler to starboard (right),
and HMAS Success to Port (left). Picture: Royal New Zealand Navy
"To operate effectively the NZDF needs to provide
fuel and logistical support to its deployed ships, helicopters and vehicles,
" said Coleman.
"This capability is crucial given New Zealand's vast maritime area,
and our security and disaster relief responsibilities in the South Pacific.
Without it NZDF operations would be limited in duration or dependent
on our partners," he said.
"The new tanker will be a significant enhancement in capability.
It will increase the NZDF's ability to support and sustain navy, army
and air force operations at home and further afield."
The tanker would be able to store a large amount of fuel, including
aviation fuel, supplies and ammunition, and accommodate an NH90 or Seasprite
The capability was needed as the NZDF had more ships that could embark
new helicopters, and it was crucial that the tanker could support the
NZDF's Joint Task Force.
"Possible winterisation features will also be considered which
could enable the tanker to resupply bases in Antarctica," said
The request for tenders was expected to be issued by the ministry of
defence in early 2015, and a final recommendation would be made to the
government in mid-2016.