Poland could acquire swedish second-hand submarines to update its fleet

Poland’s defence ministry is reportedly planning to acquire two second-hand Södermanland-class submarines from Sweden as part of its efforts to replace the Polish navy’s outdated Kobben-class boats. Head of the MoD Confirms the Negotiations in Progress.

Poland could acquire swedish second hand submarines to update its fleet 925 001 Södermanland-class submarine (Picture source: Wikipedia)

Head of the Polish Ministry of Defence, Mariusz Błaszczak, announced, during the Polish Navy Day, that cooperation with the Swedish partner has been considered to be the most beneficial gap-filler solution in the area of submarines. The planned deal was likely discussed with Stockholm during a recent visit to Sweden by Polish Deputy Defence Minister Pawel Wozny.

The unofficial information that Defence24 obtained suggests that the talks concern the acquisition, or leasing for a period of time, and subsequent purchase, of two Swedish submarines. Indeed, the Swedish Navy plans to replace its Södermanland-class subs with new vessels, Blekinge-class subs, developed by Saab Kockums.

If procurement of A17 submarines by Poland is a go, this would make it possible to maintain capabilities for some time, after the Kobben-class vessels are withdrawn. At the same time, the Minister announced that this is not a final solution and that Orka programme. What follows is the fact that Orka programme assuming the acquisition of three submarines that would also carry missiles, is still a subject to implementation.

Last year, the Polish Defence Ministry received three bids to acquire three new subs. The French offer by Naval Group (Scorpene submarines with NCM missiles), German offer (212CD submarines, type 214 had also been mentioned before) and Swedish offer by Saab, with the new A26 platform.

The Swedish Södermanland class of diesel-electric submarines consists of HSwMS Södermanland and HSwMS Östergötland. These two submarines were originally launched as Västergötland-class submarines in 1987 and 1990, and have been relaunched as a new class after extensive modernization 2003 and 2004 by Kockums AB.

Södermanland Class is armed with six conventional 533mm torpedo tubes and three 400mm bow torpedo tubes. The 533mm tubes can launch type 613 heavy-weight, anti-surface ship torpedoes. Type 613 can carry a 240kg warhead up to a range of 20km. The 400mm tubes can fire Type 43 lightweight anti-submarine torpedoes.

Deliveries of those new subs are scheduled to be completed by 2026. The planned contract is estimated to be worth some 10 billion zloty ($2.6 billion), according to data from the defence ministry.