UK MoD to provide two Fort Rosalie-class replenishment ships to Egypt

According to information published by the UK Ministry of Defense on October 29, 2021, in a landmark deal, the UK has sold military vessels to Egypt for the first time in more than 30 years.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Fort Rosalie-class replenishment ship Fort Austin (Picture source: UK MoD)

The Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships, Fort Austin and Fort Rosalie were sold by the Defence Equipment Sales Authority (DESA).

Fort Austin and Fort Rosalie will be replaced by the Fleet Solid Support (FSS) ships, which will form part of the UK’s Carrier Strike Group.

At the end of August, four consortia successful at the pre-qualifying stage for the FSS build were awarded Competitive Procurement Phase contracts to enable designs to be matured.

The consortia are Larsen & Toubro, which includes UK company Leidos Innovations; Serco/Damen, which includes UK company Serco; Team Resolute, which includes UK companies Harland & Wolff and BMT; and Team UK, which includes UK companies Babcock and BAE Systems.

The Fort Rosalie or Fort class of fleet replenishment vessel of the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary were designed to replenish Royal Navy task groups with various armaments and victualling stores while underway.

Unlike the bigger Fort Victoria class, they supply dry stores and not fuel. RFA Fort Rosalie was originally known as Fort Grange but was renamed in 2000 to avoid confusion with the new Fort Victoria-class replenishment oiler RFA Fort George. Both ships were withdrawn from service and placed up for sale in 2021.

They have the capacity to store 3,500 long tons (3,600 t) of stores, including refrigerated items, in four holds. They are capable of replenishment at sea (RAS), using three 10-ton and three 5-ton cranes and vertical replenishment (VERTREP).